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Turtles/Yellow Belly Slider


Hi, my name is Tricia, I have recently received a pet turtle(yellow belly slider to be exact) and me and my husband thought she would be warmer with a heating pad. She is 13 years of age and after a couple of days or so she started to get like a white dust looking stuff on her eyelids. Do you think she is getting to dried out? I wouldn't want her to be sick because I'm very much in love with turtles. Yet, when we put her back in warm water, her eyes seem to be normal again. I would love it and greatly appreciate if you had an answer for me. For now though I think we'll leave the heating pad out of her tank. Thank You Very Much For Your Time :)

Hi Tricia,

I'm not certain what you mean by "heating pad."  I'm not aware of any type of pad that is safe to immerse in water.  In any case, I can't really help you without knowing some specifics.  Please post back with the following information:  tank size, length of the turtle (measured straight down the plastron, or bottom shell), *exact* water temperature and basking temperature, brand of UVB and basking bulb(s), and complete diet.  I suspect your setup needs some corrections.

In general, turtles require large tanks (an adult YBS needs at least 75 gallons), excellent filtration, a source of UVB, correct water/basking temperatures, and a good, varied diet.  It is hard to keep the healthy otherwise, because without enough room and good water quality, they suffer from skin and shell problems, and they need UVB to metabolize calcium properly.  Once you post back, I can advise you on any changes that need to be made.


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Questions regarding husbandry of Russian tortoises and other Mediterranean species, sulcata, and redfoot tortoises; general tortoise and turtle care; box turtle care. If I can't answer a specific question, I can provide sources for further research. Disclaimer: My advice is not a substitute for vet care. If I think your tortoise/turtle has a specific medical condition or injury that warrants a vet visit, I'll tell you so, and if possible I'll help you locate a vet. It is neither legal nor ethical for me to provide veterinary advice.


I have kept and bred Russian tortoises for over ten years and have other Mediterranean species plus redfoots and box turtles. I've worked with other tortoise and turtle species while doing volunteer rescue work; mostly sulcata but some leopards, California desert tortoises, yellowfoots, all box turtle species, red-eared sliders, etc. I don't personally keep aquatic species, but have access to a wealth of information and research to help you with any questions you might have.

My knowledge is based on hands-on experience keeping, breeding, and working with tortoises and turtles.

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