General Care Discussion :: Female RES displays gravid behavior but feel no eggs

Taking care of your turtle's overall health.

Post Posted: Sun May 07, 2017 1:34 am   Female RES displays gravid behavior but feel no eggs


I have both a male (Jen Jen) and female (Jet) RES turtles.

I've had them since they were hatchlings and its been about a year and two months since I've got them.

Recently the female has been eating A LOT, she has not basked, she's been restless climbing on top of filters as though she's trying to escape (but still avoiding basking area), and she has a strange whistling sound every once in a while when she comes up for air.

We thought maybe it's a respiratory infection but she does not display any other signs of it, however, we are still taking her to the vet soon. Whether she has an RI or not we are still unsure if she is gravid. We have done the finger test by feeling inside her shell above and below her legs, and we do not feel any hard marble like balls. We may invest in building a nesting area because she is very shy and we have had a difficult time feeling for eggs.

How big is your turtle?
5 inches

How long have you had it?
1 year 2 months

What is the water temperature?

Did you use a thermometer?

Are you using a water heater?

How much water is in there?
100Gallon tank 70Gallons of water

Are you using a water conditioner?

Are you using any filtration?
Yes, 3 Fluval filters, 1 external 2 internal.

What is the basking temperature?

Is there a basking light?
yes UVB and UVA

Is there a basking platform that is easy to climb on?

What kind is it or what is it made out of?
It's a plastic ramp with some grip tape like material i got it at the local pet store

Is there a UVB light?

What have you been trying to feed it?
blood worms (every two weeks), dandelion leaves (once every 2 months), and dried turtle food (once every day)

When was the last time your turtle ate?

How big is the tank/pond/enclosure?
100 gallon tank

Is the tank near a window?
yes but no light gets in the tank we have a backing to cover the light from entering

Is the tank in a room with a lot of activity?

Have you read the Basic Care section?

Have you searched the forums for similar situations?
yes but my confusion is that restlessness and lack of basking can either be RI or a gravid turtle. Trying to figure out which it is.

Is there any other unusual activity/symptoms?
As mentioned earlier, Jet has a whistling sound when breathing through her nose. It only happens every once in a while. She could be overweight as well, but she's been growing a lot recently she outgrew the male turtle.
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Post Posted: Sun May 07, 2017 5:39 am   Re: Female RES displays gravid behavior but feel no eggs

The whistling noise might just be from her breathing heavy after being under and expelling a lot of energy. The restless climbing might be the only symptom you described her of having that could indicate her being gravid. Has she done this before? Does she respond to you when doing this? Does the other turtle harass her?
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Post Posted: Wed May 10, 2017 12:59 am   Re: Female RES displays gravid behavior but feel no eggs

Does she have little bubbles coming out of her nose? That would point to the RI side of the spectrum. Whistling occasionally usually isn't concerning by itself.
Trying to escape, as Steve mentioned, is more like gravid behavior.
If you are going to the vet soon, he or she will be able to check for you (without taking x-rays). I try to check my turtle for eggs - follow all the videos and everything - but I never have luck.
It can't hurt to start setting up a nesting areas to get her used to before she is all stressed out.
Good luck! I hope she is simply gravid and not ill or being harassed.
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~ "Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories" by Dr. Seuss ~
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