Is this normal behaviour for young RES?

Discussions about turtles.
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varun
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Hello everyone. Before I ask my question, I\'ve got to say that this site is an amazing resource. I found it quite by chance a few days ago and have been going over all RES posts. A big thank you to everyone.

I\'ve recently adopted two young RES\'s (one\'s carpace is about 1.4\" and the other\'s about 1.8\" ) from a friend who had to leave the country (Singapore) and have a few \"behaviour\" questions - just wondering whether this is normal behaviour, whether I can expect it to change over time, etc.

I\'ve had them for a few weeks now and these guys are incredibly panicky. Whenever anyone walks into the room, they swim rapidly to a corner of their tank and \"flap\" away - they do calm down after around 5 seconds though. They\'re fed at night, around 8:30 pm, by which time they\'re somewhat more active and less panicky - I guess by now they know they\'re going to be picked up and transferred to their feeding container (their regular habitat is a large white translucent rubberized container with around an inch of water and pebbles piled to one side for them to climb on - a VERY rare occurence - and are fed in a separate container). While eating, they couldn\'t care less who walks into the room and what they do ;-) While on the subject of eating, I noticed a number of posts about turtles \"begging\"..I don\'t think I\'ve noticed my RES do this - how would you descibe \"begging\"?

Also, they spend most of their waking hours in the water (I\'ve seen them on their pebbles very rarely - there\'s also a rock with holes into which they can crawl and while they used to do this earlier, they don\'t do it any longer) - they even seem to sleep in the water! They do - occasionally - kick a few pebbles around and get onto the dry part of the tank, but this is fairly rare. While in the water, they spend a fair amount of time in one corner or the other, trying to literally break through the container, pushing the corners and trying to make them give (VERY unlikely...).

My questions are: Is the above behaviour normal for young turtles? Specifically:
(a) is it normal for them to spend so much time in the water?
(b) is it normal for them to try to \"break through\"?
(c) and are the younger ones always so panicky? (they no longer hide in their shells when being picked up, but do get extremely nervous whenever someone walks upto the tank)

And finally, how do they \"beg\"? ;-)

Thanks everyone, and have a Merry Christmas.

Cheers,

- V.
herpetoculturist
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Red Ear Sliders are an aquatic turtle that spends most of its time in water. they eat in water and sleep in water. the only times they leave the water are from breeding and basking in the sun to regulate their body temps. its in their nature. RES also dont understand the boundaries that are its cage, so its perfectly normal for them to run into it.these two you have are very young and it is normal for them to be panicky. a great way to get them to be tamer and even \"beg\" for food is to feed them during the day when people are more active, this way they get used to the attention and learn that when people walk up it means food. feel free to ask more questions email me at:
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love to help
adam
varun
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Thanks, Herpetoculturist, Bradleychris.

Here\'s another one: I\'ve noticed that their shell gets somewhat slimy after a while (partly to do with the fact that their regular tank doesn\'t have a filter YET though I do change the water in it completely every alternate day). Is there any point in cleaning their shell, say by holding them under a gentle stream of water and using a thumb to gently rub the slime off their shell? Done this once and wasn\'t sure they liked it - then again, likes and dislikes have nothing to do with what may be plain required. Or even plain dumb.

Would appreciate your thoughts on this.

Thanks,

- V.
shai631
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Hi V, :)

I have had my 2 Red Eared Slider turtles for almost two years now, and could tell you that the answers posted to your original questions are all true & when my turtles \"beg\" they come to the side of the tank that I am standing in front of & start frantically splashing their arms about. I\'ve gotten my turtles into the bad habit of eating out of my hand :(, so now that\'s what they look for whenever I approach them.

Regarding your other question, whenever I clean out their tank, I like to take a toothbrush gently wash the muck off of their shells. My turtles are about 5\" long & 4\" wide with very long nails, & although they are used to being handled, they tend to try to wiggle out of my hands & their nails scratch me.

You probably don\'t have to clean off their shells so much, but I use a turtle conditioner creme for their shells, so they tend to feel especially slimy. I would say clean them whenever you feel the need to.

Hope this helps,

Shai631 :D
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