General Care Discussion :: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery)

Taking care of your turtle's overall health.

Post Posted: Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:17 am   One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery)

This happened a few years ago. I had two turtles.. almost of the same age but one was bigger than the other.. one of them disappeared overnight.. there was only one turtle in the tank when I saw in the morning, and our door was closed, we have an apartment. Also the tank walls were too high for either of them to climb out so that could not have happened. So whatever happened, happened inside the tank. We looked everywhere in the house, nothing. My dad said the other one must have eaten it and a friend of his suggested that turtles don't just eat their companions randomly out of the blue, unless... the turtle died first, and then the other one saw him merely as meat and ate it.. funny thing is .. there was no shell found either! So if he ate him, he ate the shell too!.. I want to know if this is possible.. the smaller one must have been 3-4 inches and bigger one must have been 5 maybe .. so not like it was very small..

This has been a huge mystery for me, and till today I think about what happened to that turtle and where did it go.. because whoever has heard this story says a turtle won't eat another turtle like that and with shell.

Things you should know -

there was no one who could have stolen it, as we have good security here and we stay on the 10th floor..

Tank walls were too high so they can't climb out.

Windows were not close to the tank, infact quite far, so a bird couldn't have flown in and taken it..

The only possible reasoning is that the other one ate him whole without any remains..

When I checked the tank later in the morning for shell or anything I could find, I did see some stuff which could have been bone or body part but I'm not sure it could be stuff remaining from their previous meals too.. but why would he leave that behind if he ate the shell..

So if anyone could suggest what may have happened, it would help a lot. I didn't find any such questions on google.. all missing turtle links assume the turtle has gone out of the tank..I can't stop thinking about this. Hopefully someone can figure this out. Thanks.

P.S. - the other turtle is doing great by the way, he's grown double the size in this time.. (but he still can't reach the tank walls to escape btw..) he's almost 10 now.
kushalgarde
 
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Post Posted: Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:25 am   Re: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery

I would say the other turtle escaped. They are extremely good at hiding, climbing and digging so it's not unusual for one to get stuck into a really tight crevice.
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steve
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Post Posted: Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:39 am   Re: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery

Hi Steve thank you so much for you quick reply. Just want to say, that though that's the only logical explanation it just could not have escaped.. firstly because the tank was on a height, so if it even managed to escape, it wud have fallen and died or hurt it's shell. The tank was 4-5 feet above ground.. secondly.. even if it survived that, after that it had no way to get out. I live in a city in a building.. toilet doors were closed, main door was closed.. no way for him to escape.. so we would have found him somewhere at home the next day when we looked.

What do you think about the other turtle eating him along with the shell? Is that possible? Is it possible that the small one died because of something and then the bigger one ate it after a while (shell too since shell must have become softer after death?)
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Post Posted: Thu Jan 26, 2017 1:27 am   Re: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery

With the sizes described, I don't think it could have completely eaten the other one without any evidence. As for the escape, I just meant out of the tank. It could and likely has died inside the building.
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Post Posted: Sat Jan 28, 2017 9:33 am   Re: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery

Oh okay. Thanks.. After all these years I'm feeling so guilty because at the time we just assumed it would be impossible for him to get out of that tank and so one must have eaten the other. So we didn't really investigate much after that. Now I realise how stupid it was to assume that one turtle completely ate the other whole without leaving traces.. and I'm wondering is there anything I could have done and maybe found him, if I hadnt assumed and kept looking? That's something that has been bothering me..

We had looked all over the house that morning but not found anything.. we live in a different building now. I feel so bad that I didn't do anything when I had the time.. :( maybe I could have looked all over the building, in the stairs, and asked people to look out if I had posted about it then, or realised how stupid our assumption about his disappearance was. We just slept knowing we have two turtles and woke up to see only one.. almost like the other one disappeared in thin air. It hurts me to know I'll never know what really happened with him after he left the tank (if he did) and what did he have to go through. I've seen two turtles dying and it's really not nice when they're weak and close to death.. mine was a fit, nice, happy turtle... Can't imagine what he must have had to face after the incident.

How do you think it must have got out of the house when the door was closed all along ? And how must he have got out of the tank when they were much smaller to even reach the top?
kushalgarde
 
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Post Posted: Sun Jan 29, 2017 2:35 am   Re: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery

I'm not sure how your place is setup, but if I had to guess, I would think that he died somewhere in the house. Could be behind some cabinets or shelves. They do like to hide in dark, quiet places so he would have been hard to find.

I wouldn't beat yourself up over it. We make mistakes and they make mistakes, stuff happens.
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Post Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 12:03 am   Re: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery

Dude, if you live/lived in NYC, I've heard of people eating turtles.. to be more specific pregnant women, as some source of nutrition. So maybe someone who knew you had turtles decided to take one and sell it, or give it to someone they knew for consumption.. I hope that didn't happen to your poor baby turtle.. but just another hypothetical guess for the bucket.
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Post Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 6:29 pm   Re: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery

Okay thanks again.. we had searched the whole house everywhere possible.. it wasn't anywhere.. I just wish there was a way to know now.. I recently found some pictures of it basking in the tank when it was smaller.. <3 .. I had also made a music video of both of them with the song So Happy Together by The Turtles ... They actually were infact pretty happy together... I feel bad that this guy lost his friend too.

One question.. How much do turtles understand and remember ? Do you think the turtle I have right now remembers he ever had another turtle in the tank or wonders where hes gone? Do you think the one that disappeared suffered emotionally before death (assuming he died, and isn't still alive somewhere somehow) Do they understand this much or is their experience oblivious to these things? Do you think he regretted escaping (if he did) and then wished he hadn't? How much do they feel all this?

@cowabunga1931.. I stay in Mumbai, India.. don't think that could have happened, though I considered someone took it but then they wouldn't take just one.. plus it happened overnight and our doors always closed, unless someone broken in just for the turtle lol.. anyway, thanks for your reply :)
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Post Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 7:00 pm   Re: One of my red ear slider disappeared. But How?? (Mystery

I don't think they have an attachment to each other, though there is a lot that is not understood.
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