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3.2 out of 5 stars
Turtles & Tortoises For DummiesÂ
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Like all other Dummies books, this one hits a great balance between ease of understanding and completeness of information. If you are a turtle or tortoise owner and can afford only one book, this would be a good one. It would also be a good book for someone who is trying to choose a pet.
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on January 5, 2010
The most comprehensive book I've seen to date on the subject. The detailed information on Box Turtles is thorough and informative. Not packed with glossy pics, there are a few and a lot of black and white pics but full of real information.
These are not easy to keep, and box turtles need a lot of room and care in their indoor enclosures, I have three and built a turtle table out of and old "4'x 4')dining room table, and box turtles don't even grow as big as tortoises!
Anyway a great book for the care of these amazing animals...
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on June 17, 2004
Given that this book is obviously aimed at the beginner it would make sense for the book to offer decent info for commonly available species; mud and musk turtles, painted turtles, cooters, sliders, maybe Russian and Greek tortises, salcuttas, and some others. However, it doesn't.
The book focuses an insane amount on the large, expensive (often over 1,000US), rare-in-captivity tortises like the Galapagos and aldabra tortise, which are exactly what the novice keeper wont' likely be buying. The common, affordable, and easier to keep turtles and tortises are given short shrift in this book. They may get a line or two, but that's about it.
Furthermore, what information is given seems suspect; reccomended cage sizes tend to be on the small side, temps can be off, as can humidity. It's really not worth having--I threw my copy away.
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on March 17, 2004
I purchased this book thinking (hoping) it would be the excellent source of information it is advertised to be; it is not.
I am very experienced in keeping all kinds of companion animals. As a rule, when I think I might want to add a new species to my household, I research the critter in question with great care. I purchased this book prior to getting my first tortoise. At the same time, I began researching my chosen species on the internet. Based upon what I have learned on the net and in speaking with tortoise keepers & breeders via e-mail/telephone and in person at "reptile expos", the information in this book is at best dated and over simplified and at worst may be dangerous to your pet.
The kindest thing I can say about this book is that it is poorly organized. This alone makes it difficult to formulate an understanding of tortoise culture. Further, the author often contradicts herself, causing the reader to question whether they are misunderstanding the text as they go.
Turtles and torts are highly specialized - they do not adapt to us as dogs or cats do. We MUST adapt to them and fulfill their very specific needs completely. Please research your chosen species very carefully before you purchase a turtle or tort!
If you simply must buy this book, please do not use it as your only or best source of info.
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on January 11, 2004
The author was very knowledgeable about her favorites: box turtles and (large) tortoises. That's all well and good, but... None of these turtles are suited for indoor keeping! I would expect that most prospective or current turtle keepers want or have smaller turtles, and it would have been nice to get more detailed info about them. If you can keep your chenolians in an outdoor habitat, BUY THIS BOOK. Otherwise, find another.
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on November 20, 2003
I bought this book as a starting point for my research of turtles before actually buying one. It gave a great overview on what to expect in terms of the equipment and space needed to humanely keep turtles, and enabled me to be more well informed before going to the reptile shops. I also found the list of recommended turtles for first time buyers helpful. For more information regarding in depth care of certain turtles, I had to go elsewhere, but I thought it was an excellent resource to start from.
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on November 25, 2002
Wonderfully written. She gave us so much information on the care and breeding of turtles and tortoises. It is great to be able to have one book that covers so much. A must have for anyone new to turtles or tortoises as well as those looking for more information.
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on March 12, 2002
Granted, this woman has lots and lots of turtles and tortoises -- more of the latter than the former. Unfortunately, that affected her writing a bit. She wrote a little more about land and semi-aquatic chelonians than she did aquatic types. Not to mention that she drones on and on about caring for very LARGE species of tortoises, such as the Galapagos, sulcatas, and leopard tortoises, but she skimps out ENTIRELY on how to care for hatchlings. This is particularly disturbing because she takes you through all the ins-and-outs of actually breeding chelonians and incubating their eggs !
She also said it was okay to put plastic plants in an aquatic turtle's tank. I don't know about anyone else, but I'm paranoid that my turtle will try and eat plastic plants. And last but not least, she did list a few good aquarium plants that turtles can eat... by common name. She left out their scientific names entirely. This means that I have a very hard time buying aquatic plants because many are sold by their scientific names only, AND that I could pick up some subspecies of similiar plants thinking that they're okay when they could actually be poisonous to my turtle anyway.
And this woman has written thirty books on animals ?? May the buyer beware.
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on October 10, 2001
I found this book to be great! It was full of useful and practical information for the beginning turtle or tortoise lover. It gives great descriptions of all types of turtles and tortoises, what size they are, how to care for them, what to feed them, housing and breeding tips. It's easy to follow and written so anyone can understand how to care for these wonderful creatures! I highly recommend it!
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