Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A Hatchling Three-toed Box Turtle

A few weeks ago I found a three-toed box turtle for sale, a captive-bred hatchling, who is no more than three to six months old (I'm guessing closer to three months due to his tiny size).

He looks a lot like this little guy, same size and general likeness.



I got him at Amazon Reptile Center in Montclair, California -not too far from my home.

I made the mistake of telling them that I had nothing ready for him and they kind of pressured me into buying a lot of stuff I didn't need to spend so much money on, that I clearly could have got a lot cheaper second-hand.

Much of what the pet store guy told me is in line with what many say; use a substrate that can hold moisture, maintain a basking spot on one end of the habitat at around eighty degrees, use a UV light if you keep your turtles indoors.

He recommended I feed my turtle crickets and I also wanted to give my turtle worms, which he said the only thing with worms is that they get away by worming into the soil.

I did, however, get mostly everything I needed. A soil-type substrate, a water dish, some vitamin D3 powder, a UVB bulb and a 50W heat bulb as well as a double-socketed fixture and of course a reptile tank.

I set up his habitat quickly and noticed that his shell looked a little dry, it still looks like that from time to time.   I was also sold some crickets that I placed into his tank with him. He tried to catch one, but then the crickets seemed to all jump on him and try to get to his skin. This made him dig in and he kept doing so after every bath-time until the crickets were removed. Now he hangs out for a good twenty or so minutes and then digs in.

The pet store guy forgot to tell me to pull their mouths off, he said to let the turtle eat as much as it wanted;  my new turtle husbandry was off to a bad start. 

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