breeding

Discussions about turtles.
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redred
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hi i hav 3 red ear sliders. one has many curved patterns on the bottom part of the shell and two others with about 8 spots. which are the males and females. how big do the male and female hav 2 be before they mate?
minimanY2Kev
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My brother says that you can tell if a turtle is male or female by looking at the size of the tail but I\'m not exactly so sure how it works. It is also more distinguishable when they are older. I heard that mating turtles can be very hard and you would need lots of supplies and patience. I would consult a breeder for help but it sounds like difficult work.
redred
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10x i\'ll try searching the web further. probably is hard
redred
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Hi i found this info about breeding red ear sliders from www.science.mcmaster.ca : \"Research has shown that turtles found in heated lakes generally had greater body size, clutch size and presumably a greater number of clutches than those found in non-heated lakes (Gibbons, 1970). Cootes Paradise is known to be relatively shallow. Its decreased water depth may allow for this body of water to heat up relatively quickly and reach a higher temperature than the surrounding larger bodies of water (this phenomena can be observed in shallow pools and puddles during the summer). The presumably warmer water of Cootes may be attributed to the continued success of the red-eared slider population.

Field work indicates that male red-eared sliders become sexually mature at 2-5 years of age, approximately a plastron length of 9-10 cm (Cagle, 1948). Females on the other hand mature at a plastron length of 15-19.5 cm (Cagle, 1950). The following text will describe the various aspects of the red-eared slider reproductive cycle. These include courtship, nesting, and hatchlings.




Courtship

The courtship behavior has not actually been documented in the red-eared slider populations within Cootes Paradise, or in Canada for that fact. However it has been observed in Kentucky from March to early June (Earnst, 1972). In addition some reports claim to have seen courtship behavior as late as September and November (Cagle, 1950).


Audobon, 1994
The red-eared slider has an interesting courtship behavior. During the breeding season sexually active males are know to devote the majority of the daylight hours to actively searching out females. It begins by the male positioning himself in front of the female so that they are face to face. He then extends his forelegs with palms facing outward and begins to stroke the face and neck of the female with his elongated claws. This is followed by some rapid movements of the head. After a time the female sinks slowly to the bottom. The male follows and positions himself directly above the female and grabs hold of her carapace with the claws of all four feet. After he has a firm grasp he bends his head down to touch hers and curls his tail in an attempt to place the cloacas in contact. Following this the male withdraws his head and forelegs and swings backward to take up a near vertical position. He holds this position for the duration of copulation which typically lasts 15 minutes (Earnst, 1972).

This behavior has actually been observed in my turtles, however I must admit that I did not know the purpose of this ritual until I did some research. Furthermore some experts hypothesize that the passive titillation of the female by the male with his claws evolved to replace the more aggressive, biting ritual used to immobilize the female (as seen in many turtle courtship behaviors) (Gibbons, 1990).




Nesting


Prichard, 1967
The construction of a nest site becomes essential when a female red-eared slider is ready to lay her eggs. Research indicates that females first nest when they reach a plastron length of 14-16 cm, and lay their eggs in late April or May (Cagle, 1950). When ready to nest the female actively seeks out a suitable site preferably close to the water. This site is usually an open area with damp soil. She begins to dig the nest cavity with her hind feet until a depth of 1-4 inches. Next the female uses her hind feet alternately to enlarge the cavity. The egg chambers range in shape from ovoid to spherical (Cagle, 1950).

After the nest has been excavated the female begins laying the eggs at approximately 40 second intervals. The number of eggs laid is dependant on the size of the female and can range from around 5-20 in a single nest (Cagle,1950). The eggs are ovoid in shape and have white flexible shells. During incubation the eggs increase in size and become more rigid as water is absorbed (Earnst, 1972). Once the eggs have been laid the female uses her hind limbs to push loose soil and debris over the nest entrance. When finished the nest site has the appearance of a mud ball thrown at the ground (Earnst, 1972).




Hatchlings

The eggs remain in incubation for 2 - 2 1/2 months, and some are even known to overwinter in the nest (Behler and King, 1994). After this period the young turtles hatch and emerge from the nest. The baby red-eared sliders are generally round and brightly coloured (a green carapace with yellow markings and a yellow plastron with black smudges). The young turtle’s tails are proportionally longer than an adults and they may also have a yolk mass attached to them. These yolk masses are absorbed after hatching and most youngsters absorb them just before hatching (Earnst, 1972). Hatchlings range in size from 2.0-3.5 cm and can reach a length of 3.5-5.5 cm in their first growing season (Cagle, 1950). \"
spraggsbraydon2
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If you find eggs again put them in a incubator and put it on 90 deggrees ferinhight and 90% humidity.My eggs are done like that and I sel them to pet stores and owners.So it works fine for me.Dont forget the damp vermiculite as a substrate and DO NOT turn the eggs.Good Luck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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