Reptiles/Missing turtles


I have a farm pond that for years has had a decent population of painted turtles who would bask on logs in the pond.  This spring I observed a dozen turtles of assorted sized doing this.  Now they seem to have all disappeared!  I don't see any on the logs.
What could have happened to them?

There are a few possibilities - the water may be warm enough that the turtles don't feel the need to bask, for example, and are busy foraging instead.  Perhaps some predator has been around, and the turtles are more wary.  Perhaps food has become scarce in the pond, and the turtles are wandering to greener pastures.  Try staking them out early in the day, before it becomes very hot - if they're there, they're more likely to bask just after sunrise, to raise their body temperature.


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Donna Fernstrom


My particular focus is on snakes and lizards, but I have a decent smattering of knowledge of turtles and crocodilians as well, plus the experience to get relevant information quickly if I don't have it on hand in my brain. I can answer questions on captive care, diet, breeding, incubation of eggs, starting hatchlings, and more. I am particularly experienced with ball pythons, Lygodactylus geckos and other small lizards with similar care requirements, leopard geckos, and garter snakes.


I am a professional breeder of ball python morphs, Lygodactylus (dwarf) geckos, and mourning geckos. I have begun working with Irian Jaya carpet pythons, and plan to expand to include more gecko species in the future. I also have a background breeding leopard geckos, and have kept several other species of small lizards, snakes, and a water turtle.

Nebraska Herpetological Society (

I have many care sheets published on my own website.

High School Graduate. Extensively self-taught due to high interest in wildlife and reptile care.

Awards and Honors
Fauna Classifieds board of inquiry Good Guy Certification

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