General Care Discussion :: Rescued a RES on Friday

Taking care of your turtle's overall health.

Post Posted: Mon Jul 25, 2016 3:05 pm   Rescued a RES on Friday

So, after many months of watching my step daughter neglect her RES, I had to step in and take it. She didn't fight at all and was fine with it (She is 24 years old... I didn't expect any whining...)

So, I got the turtle, some substrate (larger pebbles that fill about 1/2 the bottom of the tank) a floating log and a smallish sized rock. Oh, I also got a filter, water heater, basking light, and long light that she bought that day (I saw the receipt). She came in a 40 gallon tank with a stand (that was too small for the tank) and a metal tank screen over the top.

I figured so far so good. The turtle's name is Aeon, 7 years old, and she is VERY large - about 8" x 6" shell and she's pretty chubby.

I set her up and make a better top for the tank to sit on and I made a basking platform out of a stone tile and some PVC piping. I put in about double the amount of water she's used to... my step daughter would let the water evaporate and the turtle actually has a strange band on top of it's shell that's a different color and looks pretty bad. I was told that it was because the turtle couldn't completely submerge at any time and get it's shell completely wet.

So I have plenty of questions I guess. I'm sure the 40 gallon breeder tank is not big enough for her in the long run. BUT, every other tank I've looked at (60 gallon/75 gallon) didn't look wide enough for her. Like she would have issues turning around. My eventual goal is to make a turtle topper (is that the right term?) on top of the tank and give her plenty of space to swim in the bottom area.

I'm debating on taking the rocks out because I heard they were no good for turtles... but she hasn't eaten any yet in the years I assume she had them.

Any tips or advice you guys could give me on making sure she's happy?

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Post Posted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:03 am   Re: Rescued a RES on Friday

A general guideline is 10 gallons of tank per 1" of shell length. So a tank of 90 gallons would probably be what you are looking for. The term you're looking for is ATBA (above tank basking area), which the turtle topper is a commercial ATBA for smaller tank.

Rocks don't seem to be worth it.... sand or bare bottoms are better.
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