Turtle Shell

Post your turtle first aid questions here.
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shortstack1277
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Thu May 20, 2004 4:28 pm

Hi All!

I was wondering if there is something wrong with my turtles shell. Does it look ok because the end part of the shell curls up. Does anyone know what\'s causing it?
[IMGhttp://img71.photobucket.com/albums/v216/Shortstack1277/48dfc5c5.jpg[/IMG]
mariza
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Thu May 20, 2004 6:13 pm

Last edited by mariza on Thu May 20, 2004 6:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
shortstack1277
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Thu May 20, 2004 6:38 pm

Hi Mariza!

S/he is a cutie, huh? =oÞ Thanks for responding. I feed my turtle everyday but I think s/he is almost a year old.(I\'m guessing). I was soon gonna start feeding s/he every other day.

I feed him/her Nutrafin Max which gives the turtle Vitamin D3 and Calcium. Also, I feed him/her Reptomin which gives the turtle Calcium and Vitamin C. I rotate the two so that the turtle doesn\'t get use to eating one type of food. S/he was picky in the beginning. I usually feed it 4-5 pellets and inbetween I feed it frozen carrots and peas. S/he loves the carrots. The UVB light that I use is the ESU Reptile Super UV coil lamp. I also got a heating lamp as well. Do you know what I have to do to heal my turtles shell? I\'m getting a bit worried now. :o/

I have my 60 gallon tank set up. Let me know if you have any sugesstions for it too. I know it\'s pretty plain, but I\'m just getting started. =)

http://img71.photobucket.com/albums/v21 ... 62bcd9.jpg
mariza
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Thu May 20, 2004 7:22 pm

Here\'s the thing--both Reptomin and Nutrafin are good (I\'ve fed my turtle both), but neither provides nearly enough of the calcium that a growing shell needs. And both (especially Reptomin) are fairly high in protein and animal matter (I think the first and therefore main ingredient in Reptomin is fish meal). Phosphorus is in everything, but mainly in animal matter. And carrots, if I remember correctly, although really good because they\'re high in beta carotene, which prevents Vit A deficiency, rank close to spinach in preventing the absorption of calcium (squash is better).

I would increase the calcium in your turtle\'s diet. You can do this by getting a powdered calcium supplement (one that says NO phosphorus), moisten the pellets and roll them in the powder. You can let them dry so the powder sticks and some is absorbed and feed them to your turtle. Or, if your turtle will take pellets from your hand, you could just moisten them, dip them in the powder and feed them to your turtle (I do this with mine). It would also be good to get some cuttlebone, take off the hard backing, break it into little pieces and keep some floating in the tank so your turtle can nibble on them (I always have a few floating in my turtle\'s tank).

About the UVB coil lamp, it\'s good, but gives off only 3% UVB and needs to be replaced between 6 mos. to a year (UVB output lessens over time). It also needs to be 6-8 inches from your turtle for him to benefit the most. Now that summer\'s coming, if you can take your turtle outside for some unfiltered sunlight (preferably on a regular basis), it would be the best way for him to get those UVB rays.

Do you remember if your turtle\'s shell was like that when you got him? The condition can be corrected in time, the extent this can be done depends on how bad the condition is.

So, in essence, increase your turtle\'s calcium and UVB ray exposure. If he\'ll eat the carrots and peas (which I wouldn\'t give him BTW), try some other veggies, particularly leafy green ones like dandelions, collard greens, kale, chicory and aquatic plants, particularly duckweed (good calcium/phosphorus ratio). Stay away from spinach, iceberg lettuce, broccoli and cabbage.
shortstack1277
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Thu May 20, 2004 7:46 pm

Thank you so much for your help Mariza! I printed everything you wrote and I\'m going to go to the pet store and buy the calcium powder supplement and cuttle bone. I really do hope this helps my turtle. Did my tank set up look ok to you? I\'m trying to do everything I can to raise this turtle properly. I just got her/him settled into its new tank and the water looks kind of cloudy. Any ideas on how to clear that up?

I was wondering if you have a sugesstion on the UVB light. Since I will be working on an 8-5 bases, I will probably only be able to get my turtle outside over the weekends. I do plan on getting a big kiddy pool for the turtle to swim around in this summer.

When I found my turtle the shell was not curling up. I was looking back at some photo\'s I\'ve taken of the turtle and it may have started to curl maybe somewhere between February to now. I hope that this is still cureable.

Thanks Again!
Cheers!
mariza
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Fri May 21, 2004 4:18 pm

About the cloudiness--if the tank is new (cleaned and new water added) and the water is cloudy but then clears up after a few days, it could just be new tank syndrome (this will happen if you do complete water changes and don\'t try to preserve the beneficial bacteria that colonize in the tank). If the cloudiness is there all the time, it could be that you need a more powerful filter.
Last edited by mariza on Fri May 21, 2004 4:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
shortstack1277
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Sat May 22, 2004 10:06 am

I raised the water in the tank so it\'s now about 3/4 full. I also added another brick into the tank to make the basking area higher. I just bought the Zoomed UVB 5.0 light 36 inches. I hope that will help with my turtles shell problem. Where did you get your UVA/UVB mercury vapor bulb? It is a pain to have all that wireing around. I couldn\'t find the calcium powder supplement, so I just bought cuttle bone, broke them into pieces and put it in the tank. It looks like the cloudyness did go away a bit. It was a new tank so it probably was new tank syndrome. I appreciate your help with all of this. Thanks!! =oÞ
mariza
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Sat May 22, 2004 11:39 am

No problem. Make sure he\'s close enough to the light to benefit from it (the water will filter the rays to some extent if he\'s just swimming under it). For the mercury vapor bulb, try www.reptiledirect.com or its sister site www.4littlepets.com The Powersun or the ActiveUV Heat bulbs (I have the 100-watt flood version of the latter for my turtle and he\'s in a 50-gallon) are the most popular, but there are other brands as well.

For the calcium powder, get something like Rep-Cal (not Reptocal); I was looking at it at Petsmart yesterday. Just make sure anything you get says it doesn\'t contain any phosphorus. It will just fall off the food if you don\'t moisten the pellets first.
shortstack1277
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Sat May 22, 2004 11:01 pm

I wish I had found out about these sites sooner. I paid about 39 bucks for my UVB light. It\'s pretty cheap here. I have the UVB set up right over part of the basking area and the heating lamp is right next to it. Is that setting alright?
mariza
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Mon May 24, 2004 12:18 pm

On-line is always cheaper.

UVB light should be about 8 inches away from your turtle. With the heat light, the basking area should be 85-90F (7-10 degrees warmer than the water so he\'ll want to bask)--check with a thermometer. If the way you have them positioned allows for this, then it should be OK.
shortstack1277
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Mon May 24, 2004 6:22 pm

Thank you again for the info. You have been a lot of help.

Cheers!
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