General Care Discussion :: Over Active Female RES really strange

Taking care of your turtle's overall health.

Post Posted: Tue May 08, 2018 4:25 pm   Over Active Female RES really strange

Hi everyone.

I have a 25 year old female RES who's been laying eggs 2-3 times a year for around a decade now. It's usually like clock work, around early spring twice and once in late summer or just ends up being the spring. Eggs are always bright and shiny/healthy and I bring her out to my neighbours garden where she digs a hole naturally and lays then covers it up. The whole process usually takes around 4 hours and it takes 2-3 times of bringing her outside before she'll commit to a hole.

As anyone who has ever had a female full of eggs will know, she is extremely active and loud within the tank trying to escape when she needs to lay. This is usually a perfect "tell" and has always allowed me to take her out bring her outside and get the business done. I've enjoyed it for years however this year something very strange has begun to happen.

My turtle is waking up every 3 hrs on the dot and just bashing around her aquarium trying to get out. It's been 6 weeks of this non-stop starting at 12am, then 3am, then around 5:30am and then 7:30am. No matter what I've tried nothing is calming her down. I have been bringing her outside and she hasn't even attempted to dig a hole. Generally she walks around digs shallow holes until she is satisfied but this year nothing, no attempts at all, and doesn't seem like she even has any eggs inside her when I feel gentle around. It's really strange and all I can conclude is she has "learned" that our loft has no doors and that she can make such an incredible amount of noise it forces me to attend to her... Sometimes I'm even worried she will break her aquarium glass, she is full sized and very strong.

Has anybody got any idea of what could be causing this restlessness? It started too early to be eggs but now that it's spring she just isn't interested in laying. Thanks for the help!
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Post Posted: Wed May 09, 2018 9:48 am   Re: Over Active Female RES really strange

That's very strange. Have you dry docked her before? Does she act restless out of water?
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steve
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Post Posted: Wed May 09, 2018 10:36 am   Re: Over Active Female RES really strange

I've never really "Dry Docked" her per say. She usually spends a few hours each day basking and certainly dries out well. She also dries out when I take her outside but it doesn't really bother or stress her out. She isn't really acting restless out of water at all... Just very explorative and uninterested in the garden which is a bit odd. She just kind of explores around and isn't interested in digging.
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Post Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 6:06 am   Re: Over Active Female RES really strange

I was just thinking of dry docking overnight to break that cycle, is she still acting that way?
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Post Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 5:37 pm   Re: Over Active Female RES really strange

Basically the only solution I've found is to "blackout" her aquarium for the night using towels (leaving some air flow at the top of the terrarium cover). She tends to calm down like that but the moment I open it up in the morning she is super crazy active again. She grabs the terrarium grate with her nails and shakes it up and down. Still nothing in the garden though but I'm getting better sleep.
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Post Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 10:18 pm   Re: Over Active Female RES really strange

Hopefully it'll pass soon. If you don't feel eggs and she's not digging, I'm not sure what else you can do. X-rays would rule out any egg-related issues.
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