My new baby turtle won't eat anything - Turtles and Turtle Care
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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My new baby turtle won't eat anything

My new baby red eared slider won't eat anything I bought it 5 days ago and he won't eat the turtle sticks I tried a small insect and even lettuce and he won't eat any of it. What do I do i don't want him to die
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 10:00 PM
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It's not uncommon for a reptile to refuse food when going to a new home due to stress. May I ask how you have him set up? What size tank? What lighting? Is the water heated? This information will help determine if its stress or an incorrect set up causing the issue.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-28-2010, 11:45 PM Thread Starter
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It's not uncommon for a reptile to refuse food when going to a new home due to stress. May I ask how you have him set up? What size tank? What lighting? Is the water heated? This information will help determine if its stress or an incorrect set up causing the issue.
Ummm it's just a small plastic tank no water heater... That's the way they sold it to me....
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 12:31 AM
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Yikes. Yeah that's most pet stores. Ok, you'll need an actual aquarium. At least 75 gallons. May need something bigger if it ends up female. I suggest doing some heavy research but here is a list of basic equipment you'll need:
75+ gallon aquarium
Water heater
Uv light (get the florecent strip not just a lamp. Bulb must emit both uva and uvb rays)
Heat lamp (dont worry about a special bulb just yet a high wattage CLEAR bulb from walmart)
Calcium and multi vitamin supplement for reptiles
He'll need a diet consisting mainly of protein (crickets, crayfish, feeder fish, worms) and some good veggies (collars greens, green beans, squash; etc. Avoid lettuce as it consists of mainly water and very little nutrients). Offer fruit too. I'll try to find a good caresheet for you in the morning.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 06:55 AM
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I would give the store a call today. Did you purchase the exact food it was eating in the store? Did they have a heater and heat lamp on their tank? The goal is to duplicate the way they were in the pet store, or best how they would live in the wild, basking in the sun. You should get the biggest aquarium you can, yes the goal is to get to 75+ but your budget and space might not allow for that right now. It does not have to be overly deep. The more horizontal distance/space the better. They need water to swim in, a dry place to crawl out onto (floating turtle ramp $ or a solid pile of rocks) and love to bask in the "sun" or heat. If they don't have a heat source or lamp there bodies slow down, their body temperature goes down in winter. ie hibernation. We keep them under heat lamps to force them to stay in "summer". If the heat in the room it is in goes lower at night and it does not have its own lamp then it will be affected by it. Make sense?
Your first task I think is to get a heat source over him. a goose neck lamp if you have one. Be careful how it sits, can't fall into the water, I don't know your set up. I hope it's not a little turtle tray 10 inches round, do they still sell those?... he'll definately need more room fast. You can get special bulbs for reptiles that provide heat, with UVA and UVB etc. I don't know what they need, talk to the store! But a basic light bulb, the old style, not the spiral ones, provides heat but it won't be dark like night time. There are bulbs that give heat, infrared, without the excessive brightness. He needs heat ongoing but he also needs night and day just like we do. We all have an internal clock in us. Also while setting up that lamp/heat source put your hand at "turtle level" to see how warm that source is... you don't want it to be too hot either. Set it so that he can move into the warm spot or move away from the warm spot, he needs to be able to get away from the heat if he gets too hot also. Get a thermometer for your tank so that you can know the temperature of his water ongoing, you can check it daily, to maintain consistancy of temperature. Get a little calender book to keep track of what you have done each day. It's hard to remember what you have done on what day. The ideal set up has a good swim area with a filter in it, and small fish for it to catch, feeder baby guppies, goldfish will likely be too big but a couple will make his "world" more realistic. But the fish need water quality too to live, it's all a balance. read lots to find out what they need.
So get the biggest aquarium you can, you can place it on a dresser, you won't necessarily need a stand or glass top, but if you have cats you might want to get a terrarium top for it. That's a metal screen top that fits around the top edge, purchase the exact dimensions of the tank you buy. The store will help you choose the right one.
Hope this helps, keep us posted! Good luck.

Last edited by SeaHorse; 12-29-2010 at 07:01 AM.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 08:59 AM
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I wouldn't follow the pet store's advice as they'll probably tell you wrong since they already sent you game with only a plastic tub for him.
A 20 gallon will work for now but I always suggest going ahead and getting what size tank youll eventually need. Itll be easier.
The filter will need to be 3x the strength for 5he size of the tank as turtles produce a lot of waste.
The basking spot needs to be bright and around 85-90 degrees F. The water should be around 73 degrees f. Get a digital thermometer to keep track of temps.
Here's a decent care sheet I found. One part says you can replace using a uva-uvb bulb with supplements but I don't suggest doing that.:Welcome to ATP
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 12:11 PM
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Kazzy that is an amazing link! Wish they had pics of the actual tanks/homes for her to see how they are set up. But an amazing resource for care and feeding etc. I'm passing that one along!!
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 12:13 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 12:23 PM
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Worst case, you could use a big rubbermaid container rather than an aquarium I'd imagine...

Of course, you can only see him from the top, but meh.

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 01:39 PM
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Thanks Jackie!
Yes a rubbermaid would be fine just be careful that the water heater won't melt the plastic.
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