( Kelly ) asked in PetsReptiles · 1 decade ago

Worried about my baby turtles ================?

I have had 2 baby red-eared sliders for 6 months. I took them with me on my way back home for Thanksgiving, and then back just yesterday (a few hours in the car at a time). They aren't eating as much anymore...

I used to just feed them those pellets. Now all of a sudden it seems like both of them (at the same time) don't like it anymore. One of them (Larry) will bite it, and then spit it all out in disgust.

I tried to feed them other food, but they don't like any of it. Well, I fed my other one (Sam) hotdog, and he liked it... but barely ate any.

Their habitat is just fine. So it's not that. How do I get them to eat?

Are they still traumatized from being in the car for so long after coming back from Thanksgiving? It wasn't like this before. Are they sensing it's Winter, so they're just shutting down? Or are they getting old enough to where they don't have to eat as much anymore...? Help please. =( I love my turtles...

3 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    At 6 months, you can start feeding every other day, but try fish,crickets and mealworms.

    For the first 6 months of life, feed commercial pellets and/or other 'meaty' foods (such as earthworms, crickets or fish) once daily, enough to diminish appetite but not gorge the turtle. After 6 months, switch to every other day feeding. Romaine lettuce & other leafy greens may be offered daily for graze at will. Over time adjust diet content & schedule accounting for growth, activity level & appetite. Overfeeding high-protein foods causes rapid growth, shell deformities (pyramiding) & is believed harmful to the liver & kidneys. If the carapace scutes develop a prominent concentric ring pattern &/or thicken, making the carapace bumpy, cut back strongly on protein in the diet or your turtle will have a permanently pyramided shell. While growth rate varies amongst different hatchlings, at 1 year of age we want to see an SCL of 2 to 3.5". At all ages recommendations on the amount of meaty food to offer vary; some suggest enough to fill the head back to the rear of the red patches if it were hollow, others let the turtles gorge but only feed twice per week, & some simply feed enough to slake appetite a bit. For a 50 cent piece-sized hatchling, 1 or at most 2 regular ReptoMin pellets per day are sufficient.

  • Jen
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    In instances where a RES refuses to eat, you need to first make sure the water temperatures are correct (75-78F). Temperatures that are too cold will inhibit appetite and reduce activity. If you are a new red ear slider owner, you need to understand that you must feed them in water. You can simple drop food in and in some cases feed by hand. You may NOT want to try that initially, since being in a new environment will be very stressful and distracting.

    RES must eat in water and food that is alive, has a strong odor and/or bright color usually work well. For instance, water from canned tuna fish may be used to moisten pellets to strengthen taste and smell. Remember, foods that are used to encourage eating are not a staple food or even the optimal treat. They should be rarely used or not at all and is only a temporary solution. Remember to not over feed and overcompensate for previously missed meals. Here are some suggestions from the previous lists to try to entice a reluctant RES.

    Live prey Feeder fish


    Rosy red minnows

    Crickets (pinhead)



    Processed / cooked / canned foods Boiled egg whites

    Boiled white chicken, turkey meat

    Salmon (Canned - in water)

    Tuna fish (Canned - in water)

    Bloodworm (Midge fly larvae)

    Crickets (pinhead)

    Gammarus (shrimp)

    Mealworms (freeze-dried)

    Related Topics: Overfeeding

    Methods to Entice Eating Pellets, Vegetables

    Pellets should be the staple of our turtle’s diet. If you haven’t done so already, you should purchase a new can of reputable pellets. As mentioned earlier, soaking pellets in tuna water is often worth an attempt. The strong taste and smell can make a pellet more appetizing. You can quickly dip a pellet in this water or you can marinate or soak for a short while and let it dry a little to harden up.

    You can also crush and mix pellets with other foods (see above list). However, try to stick with pellets and gradually increase the pellet concentration. New turtles, whether a hatchling or adult, may be very reluctant to eat in a new, distracting environment.

    Over time, pellets will dissolve and break apart in the water. Do not assume your turtle is eating because you no longer find pellets in the water. Remember to not over feed and overcompensate for previously missed feedings.

    Since vegetables should be an important diet of RES, especially older ones, turtle keepers have also been able to apply this method for vegetables. It is worth noting that younger RES are more carnivorous and will be more accepting of pellets and prey. You should continue to offer it, regardless if your turtle shows interest. One option that has also worked well for others is adding aquatic plants. They are relatively maintenance free and will live in your tank until eaten. Make sure you rinse any aquatic plants before adding them into your tank. They are known to harbor snails, which your turtle may even be interested in but can over run your tank.

    Visit http://www.redearslider.com/ for more information on feeding your RES. There is a whole section on that. Or the forum- where you can sign up and ask any questions that you are having with your turtles- http://www.redearslider.com/forum

  • swddrb
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    turtles don't like the move

    i had bigger ones that when i moved to another state and were put in their tanks they even atact each other

    they were really big and old the youngest was 46years the oldest was 68 years

    don't move them so much if you don't have too

    if your going away for a couple of days they can stay put they don't have to eat every day

    even when your there your suposed to feed for 2 days then fast for 1 always

    they should be fine even up to 1 week with out food when they are small, bigger turtles can go longer

    but they may be p*ssed at you if its more than 1 week

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