QUESTION: Hello. I have 10 Indian Roofed Turtles. 6 large size (about 3-4 inches long), 2 medium size (about 2 inches) and 2 small size (about 1 inch). I brought them from local pet shop. Now I want to release them in a large local government pond. The pond has green water and there are fishes in that pond. But no one fishes there. If I release them there will ALL of them get food ? Is there a chance that the fishes will eat turtles ? Or which turtles should I release ? All , big ones, medium ones or small ones ? And if any pond's water is black will they get food there too ? Can I release them in a pond where there are no fish ? My dad's returned home and he says we can't keep them anymore plus there's not enough space to keep the big ones. Should I release the big ones only ? because the medium ones are not so big and small ones are very small. I live in Dhaka, Bangladesh and there are no vets or animal rescue centers in my city. One more thing : Big ones are very much afraid of humans , medium ones are also afraid but not so much like them and small ones are not afraid of humans at all. Please answer all of my questions and help me to free these animals.

ANSWER: That's a lot of turtles.  I can't tell you what will happen to the turtles in the pond.  It sounds like a horrible idea but I don't know what the pond looks like, where it is located, how big it is, or.... anything else.  Some fish will eat turtles.  Birds will eat turtles.  People will eat turtles.  Dogs, cats, other small mammals, etc., will eat turtles.  If these turtles have always been captive animals I cannot recommend releasing ANY of them.  Giving them to people who what to care for them would be preferable.  If you absolutely must release them I'd suggest you find a river, stream, or LARGE natural lake in which to do so.  It appears from Google maps there are several large rivers in your area.  Try to find one that is as free of pollution as possible and release them there (again only if you must).

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QUESTION: Thanks a lot for your answer. The pond has green water. And there is no chance of being eaten by anything (cats,dogs,birds,humans all) except fishes. So should I release them in a pond without fishes ? And different size turtles don't make any contact with each other. So I keep different size turtles in different places. If I release them in a very large lake isn't there a chance that they will get separated ? because there are only 2 medium and 2 very small turtles (shell 1 inch). They can lose one another very easily. But if I release them in a medium or small pond there won't be a chance of losing one another. Don't you think ? But I release them in a very large green lake they will be more safe I think. If I keep small ones they will eat what I will feed them but if I release them will they naturally grow up to eat the food available in pond ? because they are very small and try to bite and eat everything near their mouth including my finger. So should I release small ones or not ? I know I'm bothering you but I feel like I'm their father and always wish the better for them. Thank you again. Would be very grateful if my questions are fulfilled.

ANSWER: Green lake=algae.  If the whole lake is green then the algae is out of control=lake not healthy.  ANYWHERE you release them there is chance for something to eat them.  I don't understand "government pond," what does that mean?  It sounds like a pond that is used to dump polluted water.  In my opinion the larger, healthy body of water is better.  I'd take them to one of the larger rivers outside your city and release them there (if I had to release them).

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QUESTION: Thanks a lot for your clear answer. I myself have visited another medium size pond yesterday (restricted pond , absolutely no one goes near it , I think it's abandoned). That pond also has green water (not overly green and you can see through it for about almost 7-8 inch) and fishes and some trees around. And most surprisingly I have seen some Indian Roofed Turtles in that pond. They were of different sizes. One was about the length of your knee from ground. Pretty big. And there were some of size of your feet. I think it's very clear that they have grown up in that pond because no one would release such big turtle in that pond because that whole area is restricted. So they are completely safe from humans. Now the question is should I release the very small ones (shell 1.5 inch exactly) ? Will they get food too ? Is there a chance that big ones will attack them or stop them from eating food ? Will the fishes eat them ? And that pond has small woods fallen from trees in water. Some turtles were sitting on it. And that pond has stairs near it too but no one uses it. I have given all the data I have. Please tell me if I should release the small and medium ones (shell about 2.5 inch) ? Please reply soon I have to release them very quickly. Thanks again.

The bigger ones of course have a better chance of survival because they are less likely to be eaten.  The other thing to consider is the number of turtle you're talking about.  Adding 10 more turtles to a single small pond might be too much-but you and I might have different ideas in our heads when we use the word "pond."  I'm thinking of something about an acre or so in size.  I also worry about why the pond is restricted, but if you've seen turtles in it then it is probably ok.

I still like the idea of the river better, but you need to do what you need to do.


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My area of expertise would be snakes and reptile genetics (again mostly w/ snakes). Although I have dealt w/ almost all species of reptiles commonly sold in the US.


15 years keeping, breeding, selling, and teaching about reptiles.

Past board member of the Central FL Herpetological Society

B.S. Biology Ed. UCF

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