General Care Discussion :: Activities/entertainment?

Taking care of your turtle's overall health.

Post Posted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:02 am   Activities/entertainment?

My RES Sabz swims around a lot and basks in short time increments throughout the day, but I noticed he likes to tear down the water plants I put in there, he rips the roots out but doesn't seem to eat them. Should I get him something he play with/chomp on? Are there turtle toys? Store bought or homemade that help with stimulation? Sometimes I worry he his bored. (I did try a cuttlebone, he was not very interested)
Also, do you suggest taking him out of the terrarium occasionally? I can make him a dry habitat out of a cardboard box he could hang out in for an hour or so every so often, would that be helpful or harmful?
thanks!
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Sangposht
 
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Post Posted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 8:56 am   Re: Activities/entertainment?

What I do will depend on size of his tank. If small you may be able to down size some of what I do. I let a turtle be a turtle and have turtle things to do . In wild they have branches to swim through caves to explore things to dig in etc. I have always setup habitat as adult size or as large as one can. Boy , that saves money on all those upgrades over time if one can. I give climbing area's , turtles love to climb , just make it safe and escape proof. I make mazes with rocks , driftwood anything safe to swim around in. Have places for Piggley to dig in. I even hide algae wafers under rocks for him to hunt and find. Piggley always find them. If yours do not find it I would remove it before it rots.
Turtles are very nosy , curious and always hunting it's there instinct even in captivity. Believe it or not some turtles like attention and require good quality time with you. Have seen habitats setup for humans pleasure / cosmetics not the turtles , boring for that turtle! Play time , Turtles always beg for food , with Piggley when feeding time is over and still wants more I get his attention on something else. I gently push him around with my finger. It's now a game where I spin him around in a circle and he loves it. Push him as if on a surfboard ( gently and slowly) and he comes back for more. He's thinking about playing not food ! Piggley's a happy turtle now ! Me too !
Some turtles do not like to be handled or get stressed out when you do , going outside is good but make it a safe place . Turtles are very fast ! Some are too scared , to many people around , cars passing by so this is why I offer the best I can to there habitat , turtle friendly. When/ if outside offer a "quiet place" will help him feel safer and may enjoy it.
As far as tearing down your plants that's natural to them. Yes Live plants are good but you have more maintenance with them and some don't have the time. I use that extra maintenance for more time to spend with Piggley , he try's to even help. If he don't like where I put it he digs it up while my hands are still in the tank. So I move it then he likes it there and leaves it alone. He's my boss and it's his tank !
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Post Posted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 1:18 am   Re: Activities/entertainment?

Thank you Litefoot! Great tips!
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Sangposht
 
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Post Posted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 11:04 am   Re: Activities/entertainment?

When I was married use to say Happy wife Happy life. Today it's me and Piggley so , Happy Piggley Happy life !
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Post Posted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 4:20 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

Sadly, I don't seem to have a green thumb, so I typically forego plants if I can get away with it :oops:

However, I notice my turtles seem to like watching the fish, Yaji from the basking dock and Yumi from the underwater log, and they're probably fantasizing about nibbling on them, if only they were bigger and the fish were slower.

I have Green Tiger Barbs and 2 Sterbai's and even though the Sterbai's are slightly slow and clumsy, they're pretty alert, so usually drift away from Yaji and Yumi :lol:


All that being said, I think perhaps getting certain tank mates can help as well :D

A walk around a safe outdoor area should be fine once in a while, but definitely do things that would enrich the turtle's life, like litefoot mentioned, hiding their food.

:mrgreen:
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Post Posted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 4:33 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

When I kept several turtles I had my Mickey (18y.o.male RES) the oldest teach the younger one's how to catch the feeders. They follow Mickey to the dock and line up , heads hanging over. Watching , all there heads moving back and forth at the same time. Could almost hear them "I can get it , I can get it" "me first , me first".
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Post Posted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:42 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

I like the idea of hiding treats under the rocks (sand in my case)
Like litefoot said, turtles like turtle stuff. Penelope likes to redecorate her tank rolling things all over the place. She eats everything in sight so she just gets big stones and sand. Her hiding spot? well... one day I put a plastic-ish stacking bin in her tank (I forget why). Anyway, she latched onto it as a floating hideaway spot. It's the only thing she won't eat. Sometimes she flips it on end and hangs out on for awhile. Other times she turns it completely upside down and floats around. The point being only you and your turtle know what works for fun.
"I know up on the top you are seeing great sights, but down at the bottom we, too, should have rights"
~ "Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories" by Dr. Seuss ~
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Post Posted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 11:10 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

A long time back Piggley was always trying to escape. So I started observing better , the why he's doing something. He now lets me know he wants out. He gets on his dry dock to the highest point stretches his head out to look at me. He's telling me he want's to watch TV in my lap but always seems to fall asleep. When he wakes up At 5:30 am he has an exercise program he does , including jumping off his basking area. I made it higher about 5" and he's now trying out for the Olympic games in diving. He also has an exercise swimming pool / creek to stay in shape. Piggley and I are happy.
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Post Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 9:35 am   Re: Activities/entertainment?

So, Sedge's newest escapade is that he tries to escape / demolish everything in his basking area. I think he is just more bold and now curious. I'm pretty sure he's male (I know sudden urge to escape can mean gravid female)...

I took him out and let him walk on a towel a couple days ago. But he jets as soon as I put him down anywhere outside of his tank, so I'm not sure if I should encourage this habit or not.

Image

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Post Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 10:08 am   Re: Activities/entertainment?

Them claws' a male !
He's just being a turtle , Curious , Nosy and testing things...
I do not let Piggley run free in the house , most forget that most of us pesticides. Turtles use their mouths to test things.
Also only area outside is my back yard by my vegetables No pesticides used / organic ! My turtle zone and he takes a free snack sometimes.
Front yard fertilizers and weed and feed used ...my No Turtle Zone.
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Post Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 9:57 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

I would definitely not let him run free / without supervision. I don't know if he is bored though. Today he spent a lot of time in the position in that first photo, knocking on the plexiglass and looking at me while I worked on my computer...
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Post Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 10:43 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

Turtles are just like children sometimes they need more attention. Even if it's just sitting around "together". I was just telling someone when I'm reading a book I at times read out loud and Piggley watches me. You can call me weird but it's our one on one time. I love my stock tank next to my chair , I can hang my arm over the rim and let Piggley push my fingers around. Then I take my turn and push him around. The human looks he gives me I know he enjoys it and is happy. I had a 125 glass tank I put on the floor with ATBA years ago , thought that would give me and Mickey more contact . Not until I changed to stock tank's did our relationship grow. So much more eye contact and physical contact and I truly believe that helped. Never went back to glass tanks since. I think a turtle feels like it's in a natural pond than in a glass showcase that's more for us than them. Please I love your setup ! This is me and me only ! I have nothing against glass tanks for others . I have the stock tank wrapped in a real bamboo window blind and think it look's good to. I always offer more attention if I ever think a problem is about. Always worked for me.
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Post Posted: Wed May 17, 2017 12:54 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

Hmm. I get the impression he wants to do more moving / exploring...

I'm thinking of purchasing a cheap kiddie pool so I can take him out for a supervised romp in the sunny yard...

I was thinking mostly land, with a bucket of water in the kiddie pool.
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Post Posted: Wed May 17, 2017 1:09 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

That would be a great idea! Just a though , instead of a bucket how about a large paint tray or something easy for Sedge to get in and out on his own. Maybe a cover to an old tote some have a wide lip so you could have an inch or two of water? Even supervised I would still offer some shade too.

Piggley is into climbing so I made his basking area about 5x's bigger from cork and higher in areas for that. He loves it ! I tell people he's training to be first turtle that made it to the top of Mount Everest !

Pictures have been about "ATBA" and great I like. Question on the water area. Do you have thing's for him to investigate , any wall cave , tunnels , places to hide food and let him find it. All my turtles over the years have been on the nosy side.
Last edited by litefoot on Wed May 17, 2017 1:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Posted: Wed May 17, 2017 1:20 pm   Re: Activities/entertainment?

Yeah, by bucket I meant this old thing that's more like a cat litter pan. I will experiment and post pictures if it comes out well :)
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