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Turtles/turtle pond filter


Hello, I just purchased a 125 gallon pond for my two red eared slider turtles. I am needing to buy a nice filtering system. How many GPH filter pump do you recommend? I've noticed my turtles can be very messy and it's hard to keep their tank clean, so I really want something that will keep everything clean.

Hi Hannah,

If at all possible, consider increasing the size of your pond to at least 250 gallons or even bigger.  125 gallons is really only adequate for one adult RES.  Two would be crowded, and it would be more difficult to keep the pond clean (which is probably why you're having a problem keeping their tank clean now).  The filter should be able to handle at least double the pond capacity, and more is better if you want to keep things really clean.

Here's some additional information for you:

There are also youtube videos on DIY pond filters, so you might want to check those out.  Good luck!


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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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