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Andrew Hermes - Arizona Tortoise Compound

Here at Arizona Tortoise Compound I am always being asked the question...  "what exactly is ATC all about? 

Arizona Tortoise Compound was created by, Andrew Hermes, for  many reasons, but the main goal is to help all tortoise species through captive breeding. This is accomplished through a lot of different means and I try my best, to do my part. As a private tortoise keeper, I have slowly learned through self education, hands on experience, many failures, and many successes. Starting from the "now common"  Sulcata Tortoise(Geochelone sulcata) over a decade ago, to currently maintaining 37 different sub species/species, with many of them being listed as Critically Endangered, CITES Appendix 1. I truly believe that maintaining legal species of tortoises and captive breeding will help slow the wild exportation of these animals.  Many chelonian species are approaching extinction, or are almost extinct in their native regions. With the surplus of offspring being produced by my adult breeding groups, I created ATC to showcase my tortoises and offer them to a wider audience. Over the course of a few years, by offering the highest quality and healthiest tortoises, networking and establishing relationships,  Arizona Tortoise Compound has become one of the leaders in the industry for captive produced tortoises. Being a leader, ATC has a responsibility to the Industry. I feel I need to do my part and help educate the public with correct information, work along side other breeders, zoos, private foundations and tortoise keepers to preserve these exotic animals. I've made sure to have Arizona Tortoise Compound interact with the reptile community by sharing our information on forums such as www.tortoiseforum.org , Tortoise Board.com and many different social media sites. I am personally answering emails and following up with customers daily to ensure the livelihood of the tortoises offered through Arizona Tortoise Compound. Social media such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr and Instragram help us with being able to connect with other tortoise keepers and share different husbandry technics, ideas and share photos.

 Being located near Arizona's native Sonoran Desert Tortoise population, Arizona Tortoise Compound felt a sense of responsibility for this native species. We do work with both sub species of Desert Tortoise (Gopherus agassizii and Gopherus morafkai). The Morafkai is native to Arizona but the Agassizii is also common since many people move from California to Arizona and bring there pet tortoises with them.  Working along with such organizations like the Phoenix Herpilogical Society, Arizona Humane Society, Arizona Game and Fish Department and local City Animal Control Officers, ATC has designated a part of the compound for rescued tortoises as well as setting up a Desert Tortoise Adoption Program through the ATC website.

I personally wanted to work with a wide variety or tortoises and not focus on just one species or group. The goal of Arizona Tortoise Compound is to offer only the species that I personally works with and breed. I think hands on knowledge of the species is the only true way one can offer the best information and care to others. Arizona Tortoise Compound does offer a limited number of supplies to help keepers maintain their tortoise. The supplies that are offered through the site are supplies that I personally use to maintain my groups. By maintaining such a wide variety of tortoises, this has opened many doors. Arizona Tortoise Compound is a member of the Arizona Herpetological Association, Turtle Survival Alliance, The Turtle Conservancy & Behler Chelonian Center and the Turtle & Tortoise Preservation Group.  Public donations are what keeps these organizations  going to help save wild populations and educate keepers of captive bred specimens. Taking part in tortoise conferences I am always trying further educate myself and better Arizona Tortoise Compound.  I was honored when Reptile Magazine approached me and asked if I would be willing to write a captive care article on Russian Tortoises (Agrionemys horsfieldii). The article "Captive Care on Russian Tortoises" was published in September of 2013. Currently I am working on other article on Radiated Tortoise(Astrochelys radiata) Care, with hopes of publication in 2014. I've tried to provide a good base of information for the first-time tortoise owner and experienced keeper alike through Arizona Tortoise Compound. Located on the ATC site there is multiply species specific care sheets and informational articles. I list exactly what we feed our tortoises, how we house them indoors and out and many other useful topics. There is also a page dedicated to "Links", this is a direct line to other great informational sites, breeders and reads. 

I would like to mention that we work with different schools and school teachers by offering discounts on classroom pets and donating tortoises for exhibits. This is a great way to get kids involved and hopefully they will grow up to share in the same ideals of preserving our tortoises for future generations.

Thank you,

Andrew Hermes Owner/Operator

Arizona Tortoise Compound