WOOD TURTLE

Discussions about land turtles. (Box turtles, etc.)
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LINO
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I HAVE A WOOD TURTLE THAT WAS RESCUED FROM THE BOTTOM OF A POOL, HE IS 5 INCHES LONG, WE HAVE HAD HIM SINCE HE WAS NEWLY HATCHED..I\'D LIKE TO RELEASE HIM INTO THE POND NEXT TO US...CAN HE SURVIVE? WHAT TIME OF YEAR...WE ARE IN NORTHWEST FL AND IT\'S STILL CHILLY HERE UNTIL SPRING, HOW MUCH TANK WATER DOES HE NEED, HE RARELY BASKS..THANKS FOR ANY IDEAS..
Willie
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I\'d say not to do it. If you want to get rid of him look around, there are many people who would love to either adopt him or buy him from you. Letting him back into the wild can wrek havoc in that pond, and eventually in the whole ecosystem.

It\'s my understanding that wild Desert Tortoise populations took a real hit from a disease that may\'ve been introduced by released captives.

In other words, let\'s say you have a bearded dragon or some other animal that could come in contact with your turtle. Let\'s say it has hook worms from another country & you don\'t know it. Being in the same house, sooner or later these get spread on objects to your wood turtle. The wood turtle looks okay. You release it in the Spring. It swims around & the foreign hookworms spread to a bunch of organisms & some other wood turtles. That winter when they hibernate, turns out these worms do more damage than native species. The hibernated turtles slowly hemorrhage to death.

Now, that\'s a wholey fictional speculative story, but it\'s the kind of thing we worry about with wild releases. Granted, that probably wouldn\'t happen. In fact, it\'s probably have no significant discernable impact on the ecosystem. But there\'s that risk we don\'t like to encourage.

I wouldn\'t do it. ;)
Willie
deesygirl
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Aren\'t wood turtles an endangered species?
STRAYKINGFISHER
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In some parts of the country it is, you would have to find out from your state as to its status.
CONSERVATION STATUS

SRANK: S2 COSEWIC: Vulnerable MNR: Vulnerable

The Wood turtle has been designated as S2 by the Natural Heritage Information Center, indicating that it is very rare within Ontario (5-20 records) and possibly susceptible to extirpation. In addition, it appears to be declining in other parts of its range as well. This species has been designated as \"endangered\" in Wisconsin, \"threatened\" in New Jersey, \"rare\" in Michigan, and a \"species of concern\" in New York It appears that habitat loss is the main factor responsible for the decline, although other factors may play a role as well. As such, management strategies for this species should include protection of important habitats from development, especially developments that would obstruct movement (eg. roads) within 2km of core habitat. Further suggestions include the establishment of a buffer zone of at least 100m that excludes major construction around important shoreline habitat, and the establishment of a buffer zone of 30m around protected reserves.
Quote from : http://www.trentu.ca/biology/turtlewatch/wood.htm
LINO
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Willie wrote:
I\'d say not to do it. If you want to get rid of him look around, there are many people who would love to either adopt him or buy him from you. Letting him back into the wild can wrek havoc in that pond, and eventually in the whole ecosystem.

It\'s my understanding that wild Desert Tortoise populations took a real hit from a disease that may\'ve been introduced by released captives.

In other words, let\'s say you have a bearded dragon or some other animal that could come in contact with your turtle. Let\'s say it has hook worms from another country & you don\'t know it. Being in the same house, sooner or later these get spread on objects to your wood turtle. The wood turtle looks okay. You release it in the Spring. It swims around & the foreign hookworms spread to a bunch of organisms & some other wood turtles. That winter when they hibernate, turns out these worms do more damage than native species. The hibernated turtles slowly hemorrhage to death.

Now, that\'s a wholey fictional speculative story, but it\'s the kind of thing we worry about with wild releases. Granted, that probably wouldn\'t happen. In fact, it\'s probably have no significant discernable impact on the ecosystem. But there\'s that risk we don\'t like to encourage.

I wouldn\'t do it. ;)
Willie
LINO
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Thank you for your response, I don\'t want to set him free unless it\'s best for him, I had know idea about the toll on the ecosystem! A local pet retailer said no probelm, just wait until he\'s more than 6 in. long. The turtle doesn\'t seem healthy, not eating not basking, I worry about him.
dixieee
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if he\'s new then that\'s normal most turtles are shy at the beginning and don\'t act normally..
just keep an eye on him and give him some time he\'ll be ok..
keep us posted
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