If you follow us on twitter (www.twitter.com/corbinmaxey), then know that last Friday we had a HUGE surprise! Tinkerbelle our African Sulcata Tortoise laid 18 pearly white eggs! It was a huge shocker for all of us at the reserve due to the fact that Tinkerbelle has never laid eggs before.
I first noticed something very peculiar about the tortoise habitat on late Friday afternoon. It was completely destroyed with huge mounds of earth and dug out depressions in the soil. I saw Tinkerbelle in a complete daze digging a hole as hard as she could.
I did some research and found out that female Sulcata tortoises will dig 10-15 different nests before they actually pick a suitable one to lay their eggs.
Before I knew it Tinkerbelle began to lay perfectly round pearly white eggs. It was incredible!!! A female Sulcata can lay anywhere between 15-30 at a time. We decided to remove the eggs from the nest before Tinkerbelle could cover them up with dirt and debris. (The eggs would never survive Idaho’s harsh winters).
With help from my sister we marked the top of the eggs with a pencil so we knew how they were laid in the nest. We then collected all 18 and transferred them into an incubator. They will hatch in about 6-8 months.
With all this excitement I had to capture a picture of the happy father-to-be! Tank didn’t seem too interested and only cared about his favorite thing: food!
I promise to keep everyone up-to-date with this exciting event~ more to come….