shedding

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Marianne
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how does it look like when the turtle sheds?
how often?
i don\'t think my turtle has shed (got it about a year ago)... and i\'m guessing that\'s not a good thing.
mariza
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Sheds skin or scutes? If a turtle is healthy, some (not excessive) skin shedding as well as scute shedding is a sign of growth. You indicated previously, however, that yours is not growing very much...
Marianne
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i don\'t think it has shed either skin or scutes... and so i\'m not so sure exactly how it looks like when either of these happen (if it\'s a subtle process, then maybe it has shed, but i sure haven\'t seen anything).
if it hasn\'t shed, i\'m wondering why.

thank
mariza
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With the skin, you should the shedding should be noticeable in the water and the shedding skin will look white/translucent and wispy/ Kind of hanging off of his neck and legs. For the scutes, they will get dull/whitish looking and eventually peel off. I think you would notice either--people often post in a panic when they see it and wonder what is happening. It is a sign of growth when it happens.

Has your turtle`s feces problem cleared up?
sbturtlegrlz6
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my turtle was recently just shedding and so was my friends but they kept their turs sheddings as a keepsake
Marianne
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The feces problem has somewhat much cleared up--sometimes, they look rather flaky, but it\'s not beige anymore...
when they shed skin, is there a lot of white/translucent, wispy skin (of course, this question is confusing since the term of \"a lot\" is rather general) if you mean just some flaky/wispy things, then perhaps, my turtle has shed skin before. However, I\'m still not sure if it has shed scutes--when a turtle does so, how thick/what is the color... of the scute that peels off?
sbturtlegrlz6
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It depends what type of turtle and what side it sheds on (plastron or carpace) usually a whitish beige color for res
mariza
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Shedding skin is white/translucent and wispy. It should not be that noticeable. If it is excessive (hangs off the turtle like wet toilet paper) and/or continuous, it usually indicates a problem. The scute is made of the same substance as fingernails (keratin). When the top layer is shed, pieces are translucent and to me look like a thin piece of fingernail if the top layer had been peeled off.
Marianne
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thanks--i am quite sure that my turtle has shed its skin before.
so, when they shed scutes, should it be something like whitish/translucent (thin layer of fingernail) flakes hanging from the scutes? I am guessing, as somewhat indicated by [Mariza] before, that shedding scutes should be more noticeable. Is this so?

If it is, then does anyone have an idea why my turtle might not have shed its scutes ever since I bought it (about a year ago)?

thank
mariza
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Turtles shed the top layer of their scutes when they grow. You said before yours is not growing (why, we don`t know, but you did say he was neglected in the past, which possibly has stunted his growth). No growth, no shedding.

If you`re doing everything possible to promote growth (balanced diet, warmth, clean water, basking under UVB light under proper temperature, etc.) and there has been no appreciable growth after a reasonable amount of time, perhaps he should be assessed by a herp vet for other things such as parasites, etc.
mariza
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One other thing--what is the basking area temp.? (should be 85-90 degrees F.) and what is the water temp. (78-80 degrees would be good).
Orion
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Mariza...I\'m also having problems with shedding. My RES is only about 3 inches in diameter. He was given to me as a gift. We have had problems recently with him getting over a respitory infection...but shortly after it cleared up....he started having problems again. We figured out that one of the basking platforms was forgotten when we disinfected the tank so we think he might have caught it again from that. His symptoms include a slight tilt to the left and he\'s still eating and somewhat active. We disenfected his tank again, absolutley everything. A friend of mine is top expert in the field with turtles and showed me how to do it properly, but unfortunately he has fallen quite ill so I don\'t want to bug him. Three days after the last water change I noticed a film on the top of the water (yesterday). Concerned I change the water again and today I noticed what you described above about the shedding, only to the excessive part.

In case your wandering the little guy is in a 20 long with 2 basking areas one with a basking lamp over it (Temp is around 89 degrees). He has both uva/uvb lighting.
Water temp is 80. The tank has a Fluval 240 filtering it.
Ok that said and done, I was advise to keep a close eye on him before rushing off to the vets, by my friend who helped to treat the last infection. He suggested giving him a chance to fight off the infection before intervening. He has not worsened and does seem a little better over the last couple of days. We don\'t have any really knowledgable one for turtles around here but I do have one that will work with us.

Sorry to ramble...I just wanted to get you as many of the facts first so you could give your opinoin or point me in the right direction. What if any shoud be done about the excessive shedding? Right now he doesn\'t seem to want to sit in the basking area, should I put him in the sun for a little bit?
Thanks for your help
mariza
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Last edited by mariza on Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
rfox
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In addition to Mariza\'s most able and thoughtful advice, I would add only one item, if a vet for your area is not found in her list try these:
http://www.anapsid.org/vets/index.html#vetlist. Here is a second list of herp vet possibilities: http://www.herpvetconnection.com/

I found these at the World Chelonian Trust under their medical section: http://www.chelonia.org/Articles/Locate_a_vet.htm

Hopefully it will help find you a herp vet.
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