General Care Discussion :: Turtles Growing at Different Rates

Taking care of your turtle's overall health.

Post Posted: Sun Nov 13, 2016 9:12 pm   Turtles Growing at Different Rates

I got two hatchling red ear sliders on August 28th and they were roughly the same size about 1inch shell size each. So now less than 3 months later Bull has grown a lot and now has a shell length of 2.5 inches and weighs 1.5 oz. Hermie has barely grown and has a shell inch of 1.4 inches and weighs 0.2 oz.

They are fed the same diet of zoo med aquatic turtle hatchling formula which are tiny round balls once a day roughly about the amount that would be the size of their heads. They will not eat Reptomin sticks. I also feed blood worms, crickets, meal worms and dried shrimp as treats and have edible plants and lettuce in the tank. I also keep a Zoo Med Aquatic Turtle Banquet Block in the tank. There are two fish in their but neither turtle has ever shown interest.

Hermie (the small one) has been a picky eater from the beginning and will only feed in the tank. Bull eats anything and everything. Is the difference in their growth rates/size a problem?

Should I try feeding Bull in small tank and Hermie alone in big tank? Or should I consider getting a tank divider till Hermie catches up in size? How should I adjust the feeding amount. I can weigh the food if that will make it more precise, I'm just not sure what amount to aim for each.

I have pics of them for size comparison and their tank but they are too big to attach. Is there an email address I can send to? Any advice appreciated! Thanks!
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Post Posted: Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:21 am   Re: Turtles Growing at Different Rates

If they are fed the same, their metabolism/genetics/gender might still create a big difference in size. However, as you can see there is always one in a group that will outcompete the other(s).

I would feed both in the tank, but take one out while the other eats. Setting a second tank/tub for one to eat isn't worth the hassle if it's a daily thing. A clean, dry, large plastic container or box set on the floor will do.

Skip the meal worms and Banquet Block. Feed the same amount of protein (pellets/treats) and leave the plants/lettuce in the tank for them both to nibble on. For a temporary measure, you might want to cut back on the protein for Bull.
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Post Posted: Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:38 am   Re: Turtles Growing at Different Rates

Thanks for fast reply, do you think each of their growth rates are healthy/normal but just different? When you suggest cutting back for Bull do you mean skipping treats and doing pellets only or reducing overall quantity- what would be the goal amount for Bull and what would be for Hermie? Would it make sense to do twice daily feeding for Hermie alone in tank?

Bull is slight pushy with Hermie, not biting but will bulldoze right over or swat away so I'd really like to get then more on even playing field and also ensure both are healthy and not overweight or underweight. Are there target ranges in general for the first 6 months of life? Any other signs to look out for to ensure healthy?

Thanks!
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Post Posted: Mon Nov 14, 2016 3:41 am   Re: Turtles Growing at Different Rates

It sounds like Bull is growing too fast, you can probably tell by the looks of the shell. I would reduce his overall content of pellets and treats. Don't try to have Hermie "catch up" in size. Keep the feeding a little conservative but consistent.

As for target ranges, there are no specifics. There was a thread way back where people were posting weights/measurements but you'll have to dig it up. Visual clues around the shell would be very telling.
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Post Posted: Mon Nov 14, 2016 11:30 am   Re: Turtles Growing at Different Rates

Thanks, is there an email I could send pics of the each of them and you could check out the shells? I am not so sure what to be looking for. The pics were too big to attach.
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Post Posted: Tue Nov 15, 2016 11:23 am   Re: Turtles Growing at Different Rates

Yes, you can send them here: redearslider@gmail.com
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