Shell getting white spots

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shelngav
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Today I noticed Herman\'s shell is looking whitish over the surface. He is about the size of a 50 cent piece maybe a little bigger, but not as big as a silver dollar. The water is clean, I feed him baby reptomin and reptomin shrimp. I have tried veggies to no avail. He has a reptosun (not sure of exact name) basking light w/UVB. I rarely see him basking. I am hoping he basks more when we are not home during the day. If we are home and he is basking and someone walks by he scurries into the water. The shell doesnt feel soft yet. I had noticed after we got him it looked like one scute was a bit white, I thought he was about to shed it. Do they shed all over all at once? By the way... I see conflicting things about feeding. The reptomin jar says 1-2 times a day as much as he will eat in a several minutes. I had been feeding him 3xs a day the same way. He eats 3-4 baby rep pellets and 3-4 shrimp. Please help!
mariza
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The instructions on the container encourage overfeeding, which is not good. I would feed him an amount equal to what would fit inside of his head, not including the neck daily. You could break the amount up into half a head size twice a day, but I try to keep the total amount equal to his head. If he`s still begging (which he probably will be), give him a little romaine lettuce, grated carrot or a bit of other veggie to nibble on. Also a piece or two of cuttlebone. After a year, he should be fed every other day. Veggies can be given daily, though.
Last edited by mariza on Sun Sep 14, 2003 4:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
shelngav
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I dont see any actually looking like they are peeling yet. It isn\'t fuzzy, it just looks lighter, so I am thinking it is loosening scutes. He acts fine. I believe he has grown some. We haven\'t remeasured him. We did it about 2 weeks ago to keep record. As for heat, we use the reptisun over his basking area. I hope that is enough heat. The water is about 82. He won\'t touch his cuttlebone. I have tried to even offer it like it is food. He took one bite the first day and that was it. The veggie thing...I even tried this Am before giving him any reptomin to eat some carrot slivers, and zucchini. I have tried romaine, celery leaves, apple, bellpepper, but he bites it and spits it out. I will continue, but I hope the reptomin will be sufficient if not. I have read where people have successfully raised them on reptomin.
mariza
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The Reptisun is a flourescent tube? If so, it probably doesn`t give off adequate heat to have the basking area temp, between 85-90 F. (Ordinary UVB lights don`t; checking with a thermometer would be good.) Unless it`s really warm where you are or unless a thermometer tells you that the basking area is warm enough, you should have a heat source for the basking area in addition to the Reptisun. It can be an ordinary lightbulb or, if you want to spend the money, a basking light. If he is shedding, it would help him do so.

I`d lower the water temp. a few degrees.

I`ve also read about turtles sucessfully being raised on Reptomin alone, but it is fairly high in protein. Variety is best. I`d keep trying with at least some veggies. Try some anachris.
sbturtlegrlz6
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they really like under water plants
shelngav
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The light is a basking lamp with UVB and i am pretty sure it is reptisun. Do I need a fluorescent as well? I will continue trying the veggies and also get some water plants. Which would be good, especially for the nutrients he needs? If anyone has suggestions, let me know. Thanks all!
sbturtlegrlz6
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just keep up what your doing he should be fine

p.s. herman was the name of my water froggy ;)
mariza
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As far as I know, Reptisun is a flourescent light. If the basking light is providing heat and UVB, it must be a combination UVB/UVA mercury vapor lamp, yes? If you don`t know, how much was it (combo lights are more expensive)? If you`ve got an ordinary basking light, it`s providing UVA, not UVB--very different. If it is an ordinary basking light, you still need a UVB light for your turtle`s shell (or buy a combination mercury vapor light).
sbturtlegrlz6
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how much do thiose usually cost?
shelngav
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The lamp only said UVB and it looks like a little flood light. I think it was 6-8 dollars. But now I am worried as I checked his shell this AM and it is getting soft. I brushed it and nothing came off. It is still white looking all over, kinda like the color is worn. I bought anachris yesterday and some gutload and crickets. Now how do I pump up what he needs to get his shell to harden back up and return to normal? I am worried. He is acting fine still.
shelngav
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I just went to the soft shell article posted on this site. The link was very helpful. I no longer have the box the lamp came in, but I know I was watching for UVB because I knew it was important. Looking at the prices of the UVB bulbs, it definitely must not be a UVB. I will be going today to get a fluorescent UVB. For a 10 gallon tank what wattage should I get? Any idea how long it will take to reverse the effects. I feel so bad. BTW Petco has some great info as well for reptile care. I am always open for any other suggestions. Thanks all! ;)
mariza
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Your turtle needs a balanced diet with plenty of calcium and basking under a UVB light (and basking bulb) to reverse his condition.
Last edited by mariza on Thu Sep 18, 2003 11:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
shelngav
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Thanks Mariza, I noticed when I went to Petsco online looking, that a UVB is about $30 and up. My heart sank and realized that somehow I must have read something wrong! I saw one that is suppose to be good for basking and UVB but it was $60.00. I am leaving now to get a UVB fluorscent tube. Will crickets with gutload be sufficient calcium and should I feed him just that and skip the reptomin baby for a while? Should I also buy the powder to dust the gut loaded crickets. I heard that too much protein isn\'t good when lacking calcium, so what would be the best diet to provide him with the most calcium to help reverse the awful damage I have done? I feel horrible!
mariza
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The powder doesn`t stick to the pellets, so what a lot of people do is moisten the pellets then sprinkle them with the powder and let them dry. Then feed them to your turtle. If he`s hungry and eats them fast, he should get a fair amount of the powder in him (some of the calcium is also absorbed into the pellet). Good luck.
Last edited by mariza on Fri Sep 19, 2003 12:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
shelngav
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Thanks again. I got a bulb, but the UVB was measured in nm\'s not % I came home and looked it up and it was the coil bulb you spoke of. It was only 3% and I really wanted 5% to get him going. I took it back and bought the tube and the hood for it, but dummy me didnt check and the light tube isnt long enough to fit the hood. So tomorrow morning I will go back. He is eating the anachris and I noticed he is now eating the romaine too. I keep these in the tank. I bought the powder tonight and got the one without phosphorous. I will use it on the pellets and crickets. I do hope he is not in too much pain yet. I am an animal lover and I have no idea why some people get animals without thought of their feelings. It is hard for me to watch animal planet when the animal precinct is on. I usually cry through it. By the way, I was incorrect, it is Petsmart not Petsco I got my stuff from. I figure they are about the same, but noticed Petsmart is a little cheaper.
mariza
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To be effective, the UVB light should be no more than 12 inches from your turtle. I`ve read 6-8 inches away is best. If the light is going through a screen, the holes should not be less than one-eighth of an inch. Any barrier (glass, plexiglass, plastic, and even the screen to some extent) between the light and your turtle will filter out the UVB rays. I forgot to mention before that the $60 lights you spoke of previously are the combination UVB/UVA mercury vapor lights, which do the work of the two bulbs. They are considerably cheaper on-line.

I have heard nothing particularly negative about PetsMart, but have heard that PetCo does not treat its animals well. (There was a demonstration against them this summer in Chicago apparently.) They seem to be everywhere, however, and in a pinch I`ve had to reluctantly buy from them.
shelngav
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Thanks that\'s good info. Petsmart is closer and knowing that I WILL NOT go to Petco or order from them online. This I need right away so I will go to the store. They didnt have a wide variety of choices though. There is a private owned store as well called Wet Pets that I may try. My basking light broke this morning, no glass in the tank fortunately. What wattage of regular bulb is best for basking and do the regular lightbulbs (new coiled fluorscent bulbs) put out enough heat? Thanks again for all your help. ;)
mariza
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Don`t just go by wattage for the basking bulb, go by the temp. (Get a thermometer.) Wattage will be determined by the size of the area you`re heating and the distance away from the basking area the light is to keep it somewhere in the 85-90 degree F range. Regular lightbulbs are fine (and cheaper to replace if they break/burn out). I don`t know anything about those coiled flourescent lights, but flourescent lights in my experience don`t give out heat. I would use a regular incandescent bulb for the warmth.
shelngav
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I felt one of our coiled fluorescents in our ceiling fan and could actually touch it after it had been on a long time. So I decided it does not heat well. I bought some cheap incandescents at the dollar store. I finally got a bulb that fit the hood after much running around! Hopefully with that and the calcium supplement Herman is on his way to getting healthy again. Thanks for all your help : )
mariza
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You`re welcome. It may take a little time for things to right themselves, but he should be OK. If not, a good herp vet will be necessary (hopefully not).

BTW, the shrimp your`re giving him with the Reptomin Baby--I would cut down on those and make them more of a treat, not a daily thing.
m1key72988
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mine and my brothers turtle had the white film thing on his shell to. we got ares from china town but im pretty sure its not shell rot. its on the scute too. i think its the same as urs .
mariza
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Shelngav`s turtle has gotten a soft shell (metabolic bone disease) because he wasn`t getting UVB rays. If your turtle has the same thing, you should get it proper lighting or it will die.
m1key72988
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i have all the proper lighting uvb and a heat lamp.
shelngav
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Herman seems to be doing real well. His shell feels more firm. It wasn\'t super soft, but did give when I pushed on it. The aquarium is set-up properly now. I use the powder calcium on all his food. I finished the gutloaded crickets and now he is getting reptomin. I also bought some anachris which he loves and he is eating the romaine. How long do I continue to powder his food with calcium? Also I noticed some light shedding on his neck 2 days ago and now both back feet are pretty fuzzy and white. I can see skin shedding. The skin looks healthy when I take him out. I have been brushing his shell and rubbing his back feet with my fingers to try to remove some of the shedding. Sound like I am on the right track?
mariza
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Sounds like you`re doing well. I`m assuming everything is as it should be regarding water cleanliness, temps, etc., so the shedding sounds like growth. I would keep up the powder until his shell gets firmer, then use it 2 or 3 times a week. If you don`t have one, put some pieces of cuttlebone in his tank. It`s a good calcium supplement he can munch on when he wants to. For other feeding suggestions, look at http://www.turtlepuddle.org/health/turtlefood.html Keep up the good work.
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