Written by Asma Ashfaq in Pets
Viewed by 56 readers since 05-25-2009
Sea turtles, or aquatic turtles as they are also called, are small and very popular pets. They can live for many years if they receive the necessary care. However, their care is not very easy and requires much more than you might think. The fact that they are small and slow doesn’t mean much. They are reptiles, and as such they have specific needs and requirements that need to be fulfilled to live a long and happy life. How can you take care of a sea turtle? Let’s look at some hints and tips.
Housing is an important part. You can use several different types of enclosures such as glass aquariums, containers or big tanks, or even plastic ponds. The best thing is to opt for aquariums that are created for sea turtles, especially if you want to enhance their habitat later on. If you place them outside, you need to ensure that they have enough shade. Sea turtles do not like sun that much, especially in summer when it’s too hot and too bright. Do not place the aquarium or pond in direct sun, because turtles can suffer from heat strokes and die. Actually, all reptiles are sensitive when it comes to sun.
The aquarium should be big enough. There are several opinions on the size of the enclosure, but regardless you should opt for something that is big enough. An aquarium should feature both water and surface areas, therefore you need to make sure that your pet sea turtle has enough space to move around. Make sure that the habitat is simple, because if you set up a complicated one, you will have a hard time cleaning it.
Water quality is also very important. We are talking about sea turtles after all. You need to keep the water clean and change it often. If the aquarium is large it requires less changes than the smaller ones. Keep in mind that three sea turtles need ten gallons of water at least. Ten gallons should be changed three times a week at least. A ten gallon tank needs to be emptied and refilled once a week. If you have more turtles, water will become dirtier more often. This means that you will need to change water more often, and clean the water every day.
As with people, sea turtles need a balanced diet to maintain good health and live longer. They should be fed a variety of foods as appropriate. You can use small fish such as baits, trout and guppies. There are many food suppliers for pets that sell fish for turtles. Experts suggest that you should not feed turtles with fresh fish. You should place them in the freezer and keep them there for a few days to kill parasites.
Mice can also be fed to turtles. They can provide calcium and proteins to your turtles and they are an excellent source of vitamin A. Make sure that mice are skinned. Avoid too many greens. Sea turtles are not like garden turtles and cannot digest greens or leaf. Use semi moist food always and avoid canned food. Sea turtles are small reptiles that have their own secrets. If you follow guidelines, you can make them live longer as your pet companions.