Other Turtle Discussion :: Found Tortoise in Back Yard (So Cal Desert) Can You Identify

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Post Posted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 3:06 am   Found Tortoise in Back Yard (So Cal Desert) Can You Identify

Hi I know nothing about turtles but have been amazed at how many knowledgable turtle enthusiasts there are out there! Forums for turtles, who knew. I am trying to identify this girl. I posted the same question on tortoise forum.org and a great guy said the tortoise is a red eared slider. At the time of my post I didn't have a pic of her head yet bc she hadn't come out of her shell. Now I see she doesn't have any red on her head, so I'm wondering if she is a different type of slider? I need to know my next step with this girl (other forum told me she was female) whether I release her to her appropriate habitat, get a permit for her, or find her owner if she's a lost pet. Oh he also said to eat she has to be submerged. I don't know how deep, how warm, if tap water is ok, etc. Any help is greatly appreciated. I added pics.
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Post Posted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 12:02 pm   Re: Found Tortoise in Back Yard (So Cal Desert) Can You Iden

Hi, she does look like a female red ear. Long claws and tail would indicate a male. RES are fresh water terrapins, any idea how she got to your yard? RES don't always have a red stripe, sometimes it's orangey or more yellow. Looks like an older RES and the skin and shell do become darker. I don't think you need a permit in CA, and she looks a bit more wild than someone's pet. I would still check... maybe someone nearby has a small pond. People also let them roam around their yards, its possible she escaped (they are excellent at climbing, digging, and are faster than you realize). I would also try to feel for some eggs as that is a primary reason why she might have wandered to your yard.

RES don't produce saliva, so it's much easier for them to eat in water. I would suggest having water as deep as the length of her shell (to avoid any drowning issues if she flips over). Water can be around 75F. She'll also need a basking area to dry off. Tap water is fine, though maybe let it air out for a few hours (lets some of the chlorine dissipate).
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