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Turtles/red ear slider


I bought a male red ear slider, from a pet shop a few days ago. I do not know how old he is, but he is almost full grown. I have him in a 30 gallon tank, with a water heater, basking dock, and a heat lamp. He has been been eating, swimming and basking normally, but today he started making this weird noise. so i threw a few pellots in there and he ate them.He only made the noise a few more times. Just a minute ago he made a sneezing noise. When he makes noises he does not open his mouth or stretch his neck out. His eyes are clear and not swollen. Should i be worried about this noise he makes?

Hi Kayla,

I do need more information.  Can you tell me exactly how big he is (pet stores give out very incorrect information most of the time)?  I also need to know exactly what kind of filter you have, what brand of UVB bulb, basking and water temperatures, and complete diet.  With more information, I can give you better advice.  A 30 gallon tank is too small, especially if he's almost full-grown (which for a male would be around 8").  An adult male needs about a 100 gallon tank, with an external canister filter sized for at least twice the capacity of the tank.  A properly sized tank and adequate filtration are paramount, and you will avoid many common health issues just by doing this.  But you also need correct temperatures, a source of UVB, and varied diet.

Your rurtle may be ill, but it's also possible that some minor corrections to his setup will fix things.  I'll try to get back to you as soon as I can after you post additional information.


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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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