General Care Discussion :: BABY RES NOT EATING

Taking care of your turtle's overall health.

Post Posted: Wed Nov 02, 2005 1:34 pm   BABY RES NOT EATING

HI , I've had to baby RES for about 3-4 months. EVERY now and then they wont eat. At first I think they ate alot because when i got them from this lady she had them couped in this little 8x5 mini tank. Then the male RES (IKE) stoped eating ,and dug a hole in the corner after i changed and gave them a big tank. He started to come around, then a week ago he buried himself under the gravel, for 3 days until i dug him up, and cleaned the tank. I noticed the the femal (TINA) has not been eating the pellets either, I've tried cut up pieces of apple, romain lettuce, and I just bought the appetite enhancing soft food and they just look at it and keep on with their business. How long can they go without eating??? I'm really worried :cry: :cry: . I turn the UVA/UVB light on everyday, but I have not had the basking light on for a couple days. I put it on this morning after realizing it has not been on for a while. ANY COMENTS are greatly appreciated any tips are welcome. Thanks !!!!
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ladybug02124
 
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Post Posted: Wed Nov 02, 2005 1:38 pm   

Both uva and uvb lights should be on for about 12 hours a day. Do you have a water heater? What are the water and basking temperatures? Temps that are too low will slow the turts down and they'll stop eating.

What is your setup like? How big are the turts? How big is the tank?

btw, Welcome to the site :-)
The things that come to those who wait may be the things that were left by those who got there first - Steven Tyler
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jenaero
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Post Posted: Wed Nov 02, 2005 1:44 pm   

Also, gravel is not recommended to be used in a turtles tank, especially if it is smaller than or the size of the turtles head. Turtles will eat the gravel and become impacted requiring surgery if the stones do not pass.

Like Jen said, If the temps are too low, it will slow down their metabolism and cause them not to eat. Be sure the water temp is a constant 78 for a hatchling, 75 for an older turtle with the basking temp around 90. :)
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Post Posted: Wed Nov 02, 2005 3:50 pm   

How much are you feeding them? Have you tried live foods? Also, when they do decide to eat, do not tempt to overfeed them to compensate for them not eating.

If the water temps are too cold, they will be less active and may refuse to eat.
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Post Posted: Wed Nov 02, 2005 5:50 pm   

Welcome. If the turtle is not eating and digging, it sounds like the water temp is too cool. When you check it with a thermometer, what does it say the temp is? I'd try to have it 78-79F and see if that doesn't make them more active (do they have a submersible water heater)?

I'm wondering why the basking light hasn't been on for a while (did it burn out, did you forget to turn it on)? The UVB light (which also emits UVA rays) doesn't give off enough heat to warm the basking area (to 88-90F), so both lights are essential. (The basking light can be a regular lightbulb.)

You could put your lights on timers; this would ensure that your turtles have the proper lighting for an adequate amount of time (average of 12 hours) and make life easier for you (you won't have to remember to to turn them on and off). :)
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Post Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2005 6:31 pm   RE: BABY RES NOT EATING

Thank you all for replying. When I got the turtles from the lady, I took them to petco and they told me to put gravel in it (the bag is labled turtle gravel), and put it on a slope so they have a deep part to dive and then it gets more shallow till it is dry land. Each turtle is about the size of a silver dollar, ( I read that they may be illegal due to their size).The femal has slowed down eating but she still swims alot . and the male turtle is sluggish but from time to time will move around (the guy at the pet shop said he could be stressed out, I try to clean the tank weekly, and after I put them back he seems to act really shy and go in a corner). the first 4 days had no lights the lady in pet shop said didn't need them right away, then I went on line spoke to another pet shop who suggested the lights ASAP. Sometimes I work overnight shift and the turtles are actually my mom's (I bought them for her) and i don't think she has been putting the heating light on. I'm nervous...... i don't want them to die :cry: :cry: . I don't know what to do??? should i buy a heating pad for the tank. Thanks to everyone who is helping me out. I've never really had pets.
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Post Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2005 6:39 pm   RES babies not eating #2

have not tried live food yet, the petshop lady said that the feeder fish were too big for them right now. I've tried pellets which they ate up until recently then this week I bought the appetite stimulating food, and I've tried carrot shreds, apples, romaine lettuce and they weren't interested.

BTW..... Thanks for the welcome, I 've never done a forum before, everyone is so helpful, I really appreciate it.

oh the tank also has this little cave thing for them to hid in or lay ontop of.
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ladybug02124
 
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Post Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2005 7:20 pm   

Do you have a heater in their tank now? If not get one ASAP along with some thermometers to take the temp of both the basking area and water on a regular basis. Their water should be a constant 78 degrees with the basking area around 90. Their UVB light and their heat light should be on for around 12 hours a day. They need a day/night cycle with their lights. Many people use timers for their lights.

When using gravel to make a basking area, you can't fill the tank with enough water to make your turtles happy. RES are aquatic and love to swim. Fill the tank up with water as high as you can without giving them room to escape and purchase a floating dock or make one (examples are in the photo gallery if you look through there). A basking area that is big enough to accommodate both of them and allow them to completely get out of the water and dry their shell(top and bottom) is extremely important for the health of their shells. And when providing them with a tank, remember that they need at least 10 gallons of tank per inch of turtle. If you have multiple turtles then add their lengths together to get the correct size tank.

Btw, if the turtles are only around the size of a silver dollar then you will not be able to tell what gender they are right now. When they reach four inches in length then you will be able to tell what gender they are.
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Post Posted: Sat Nov 05, 2005 5:18 pm   

How big is their tank and how much water do you have in it? I tried using sloping gravel for a basking area long ago, and I know it doesn't work well. The gravel will often shift as your turtles try to climb it, and it can be very difficult to keep it high enough out of the water to provide a dry area for your turtles bask on. It would be better to change it (the gravel will also contribute to odors and will make it harder to clean). The cave you mentioned they have--can the top double as a basking area (is it big enough for both of them to be on confortably?)? If so, it would be better to use that than the gravel. If not, you could use something like corkbark or buy or make your own, preferably with the area underneath it left open for swimming space.

They most likely won't be interested in vegetables when they're young. But keep trying, especially leafy greens like dandelions, red, romaine and green leaf lettuce (no iceberg). Young ones will also often nibble on anachris, an aquatic plant. For the core of a balanced diet, try giving them a pellet formulated for young turtles like Reptomin Baby.

By heat light, do you mean basking light or are you trying to keep them warm with a light alone? During the day, they need both a basking light for heat and a flourescent UVB light. They should be able to sleep in the dark at night, though. A submersible water heater would maintain a constant water temp (about 78F since they're small).
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Post Posted: Sun Nov 06, 2005 9:44 am   things are looking better

THANKS EVERYONE!!!!!!!!! :D :) :lol: 8) :lol: :lol: :P :D
So ............ saturday went back to petco, bought a filter, water heater, added more water, and bought soft tiny pellets, and both IKE and Tina are happily playing in the water. I saw Tina eat but not sure if Ike ate anything, I did not want to stare for too long but he played in the water (a complete change from a few days ago)

The cave is big enough for both of them to bask on, i rearranged the tank around.
That is so sad that when i went to petco for the initial setup of the tank and I brought them with me they never said anything about lights, a heater, a filter............. nothing. Thanks goodness i googled this site !!!!!!

I will keep you posted. Thanks everyone!!!!!
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