Simple Beginners Guide: How to Take Care of Baby Turtles?

 Caring for a baby turtle can seem quite daunting at first, but if you know what you're doing, it can be an easy and enjoyable experience. Over the years I have raised quite a few baby turtles who are now fully grown, healthy adults. So I decided to share my experience with anyone who wants to have a baby pet turtle.

Simple Beginners Guide: How to Take Care of Baby Turtles?
Simple Beginners Guide: How to Take Care of Baby Turtles?

 In this guide, we'll go over all the basic things you need to know, and I'll also give you some tips along the way from my own personal experience. Here's what we'll cover:

  • Choose the right tank
  • water temperature
  • A proper rest area
  • A balanced diet

Choose the right tank

 The first thing you need to do before having a baby turtle is to get yourself a proper tank. As a general rule, you want your aquarium to have at least 10 gallons of water for every inch of your turtle's shell.

 Most baby turtles are no larger than 2 inches, so a 20 gallon tank should suffice for now. But young turtles can grow quite quickly, so if you can, you should buy a bigger tank early on, so you don't have to buy a new one later.

water temperature

 Now that you have a reservoir, you want to add water. But you must be cautious about the temperature. Turtles cannot generate body heat on their own, so they depend on the temperature of the environment, so they are very temperature sensitive.

 The exact temperature will vary from species to species, but in general, 80 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsius) will suffice for most turtles. Bringing the water to 80 degrees is quite simple, but you will need a water heater. Just be careful when choosing one, most heaters on the market are designed for fish tanks, so they may not hold up in a turtle tank. Therefore, you want one that includes a guard or other form of protection.

A proper rest area

 A resting area is essential for all species of turtles. The sleeping area provides them with UVB rays as well as warmth, so you need to make sure everything is in order. In short, a basking area is basically a platform for your turtle to stand up on and spend some time "in the sun." You can either build your own rest area or buy one.

 The platform itself is not that important, it just needs to be strong and stable enough for your turtle, what is important is the light. Turtles need two special light bulbs, one to provide heat and the other to provide UVB rays.

 UVB light plays a vital role in the production of vitamin D3 which is essential for calcium in the body. Without UVB light, turtles could not get the proper amount of calcium, which can lead to improper bone growth, metabolic bone disease, soft shell, shell rot, and many other bad things. The heat bulb provides the heat that turtles desperately need since they are unable to produce their own body heat. Now let's see how to choose good bulbs for your tortoise.

 When it comes to UVB light, there are two types: bulbs and tubes, overall I would say tubes are better, but you can't go wrong either. Just make sure you are getting UVB and not UVA, this is a pretty common mistake. Although UVA light will not harm your turtle, it will not do the same things as UVB light.

 A heat bulb requires a little more thinking when choosing one. You need to consider how much heat your turtle species needs (it differs slightly from species to species, but overall 95 degrees Fahrenheit is a good temperature). How wattage is the bulb and how far from your turtle is the bulb. You should be able to choose the proper bulbs for your turtle using this short guide.

A balanced diet

The last thing you need to know is what you should feed your turtle and how much you should feed your turtle.

What do baby turtles eat?

 Most turtles are omnivores, so they eat fruits, vegetables, and meat. Baby turtles will have a similar diet to an adult turtle, but with one major difference, they will need a lot more protein. The following foods will be found in a balanced diet:

  • 80% pellets.
  • 10% fruits and vegetables.
  • 10% meat / dried insects.

 As you can see, pellets will be the main part of their diet, while fruits, vegetables and meat will be like snacks or treats. Baby turtles will need special turtle folds which contain more protein than regular folds. If you can't find baby pellets, you can always give them a little more meat or dried insects.

How Much You Should Feed Your Turtle?

 The easiest way to find the right amount of food for your turtle is to follow the head size method. Finding a small container, such as a medicine cup, shot glass, or bottle stopper, is the simplest way to practice this technique. This container needs to be approximately the size of your turtle's head, excluding the neck. Then you can feed your turtle the food inside the container when you've filled it to the top.

 You can always estimate how much food you would need to feed it to fill his head rather than constantly using a container. If you sometimes give your turtle a little too much food, and sometimes you give it a little too much, you'll be fine. Small variations will not have an impact on your turtle. This method works very well because it takes into consideration the size of the turtle and gives you a fixed amount of food that you should feed your turtle. Additionally, the amount of food changes as the turtle grows.

 This method is also very easy to determine how often you should feed your turtle. If you follow this method, you will need to feed a baby turtle every day, a juvenile turtle every two days, and an adult turtle once every three days. So that should cover all the basic things you need to know. So let's move on to some common questions that might pop up.

Common questions

Should I have more than one baby turtle?

 It all depends on how much time and effort you are willing to put into maintaining them and how much space you have available. In my experience, there isn't such a big difference between raising one baby turtle or two baby turtles, at least at first. 

 When they're small, they don't eat a significant amount of food, so you don't have to worry about that part too much. Two or more turtles will definitely do more damage to the tank, so you'll have to clean it a bit more often. Additionally, you'll need a larger tank to put them in because, as they grow, they'll require more space, which could eventually provide an issue. 

 There is also the fact that when turtles reach maturity, they begin to be aggressive towards each other. When they are babies they can go peacefully together, but as they reach adulthood this will change so they will need more space so they don't have to interact with each other all the time. . Two of my turtles were so aggressive towards each other that I had to put them in separate tanks at one point. But not all turtles will become so aggressive, it will also depend on their species and their personality.

 And if you want to have more than one turtle because you don't want them to feel alone, don't worry. They actually like it that way.

Would I have water?

 Don't bother with aquatic plants if you want to keep them for decorative purposes, turtles will eat them very quickly. In wild water, plants are often one of their main food sources, and although baby turtles need more protein than adult turtles, that won't stop them from eating plants. In my turtle tank, no plant has survived more than two days without being half-eaten. Therefore, while using plants as decoration is a waste of time, using them as food is a choice.

What must I do if my turtle is ill?

 There's only one thing you should do if your turtle looks sick, and that's take him to the vet. Don't look online for cures or solutions, turtles are difficult to diagnose and not all of the advice you find online is good.

 One thing you need to keep in mind is that any turtle will need time to get used to its new environment. During this time, she might exhibit unusual behavior, which could make you think your turtle is sick. To avoid confusion, my advice is to go to the vet as soon as you have your turtle.

No comments
Post a Comment

Post a Comment