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Turtle Source + Turtle Shack Customer Experiences

Discussion in 'Tortoise Vendor Reviews' started by TheColossus, Dec 17, 2013.

  1. TheColossus

    TheColossus New Member

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    I just discovered this section of the site (I'm new here), and thought this would be the perfect place to share my bad experiences with ordering turtles/tortoises offline.

    A little over a year ago, in the autumn of 2012 (I'd have to get the papers out to get the right date), I bought a male juvenile western painted turtle from the Turtle Shack. I have since named him Scar, for reasons that will be explained later.

    It took about a week before they shipped him out. I was very excited, as he was going to be my second turtle, and I anxiously waited his arrival. He came in the morning, and I opened up the package, and noticed he was in a bag filled with purple carefresh. I thought this was odd, but was too excited to pay much attention. Then I took him out. He was beautiful, although obviously older than I had been told, and he was injured, I suppose you could say. I still don't know how this happened, but he had a chip on the edge of his shell, and a very large chunk, I'd say equivalent to 8% of his plastron, missing on the same side. It looked like an old wound that had healed.

    I won't go into any more detail, but just know that they lied about the turtle's size and age, wouldn't respond to concerned emails and calls, and mos importantly, sent out an animal that had been injured. Luckily he's happy and healthy today, and spends most of his day basking with his buddy and tank mate Hawk, a female midland painted turtle.



    Then, a few months ago, in mid August, I ordered a pair of 12 to 14 week old redfooted tortoises from the Turtle Source. I had previously tried to email/call them with questions multiple times, but received no answers. They were quicker with shipping, and I received my two little guys, Redmond Barry and Barry Lyndon, within a few days (note: all of the turtles/tortoises I've bought have been shipped overnight, I'm talking about how long it took for them to ship them out).

    From the beginning, it was clear poor little Bary Lyndon was small and weak. He was pale, hardly moved, and had the softest shell I'd ever seen. I took him to the vet, and my fears were confirmed: he had metabolic bone disease. :( I spent hundreds in vet bills and care, trying to get him healthy, but he just continued to get worse, even under the best care. He passed away on December 3.

    Let me make it clear, he arrived with a case of metabolic bone disease so advanced that nothing we did could have helped save him, despite trying as hard as possible. The Turtle Source sent me a very sick tortoise, caused me 4 months of heartache, and only responded to my calls/emails recently, days before his untimely death. They never even responded when I told them he had died.

    I will never order from them again. Redmond Barry may be healthy, but that does not change the fact that they gave me a tortoise who was obviously neglected his entire life and never given proper care, and who died young because of it. :(



    Please, if you're looking to buy a turtle or tortoise, avoid these two sellers. Buy from actual breeders like Vicki Hale, who have pictures of each individual tortoise and can at least can give you their hatch date.
  2. Hydrah

    Hydrah New Member

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    I contacted the turtle source with a question, they have yet to reply and it has been several weeks. I guess they do not want to make a sale.
  3. Star-of-India

    Star-of-India Active Member

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    They can be pretty erratic.

    That said, I obtained 3 of my 5 Indian Stars from them and I gotta say they're awfully attractive ones. One is about a two year old and does have a fair amount of supposedly "natural to Stars" pyramiding. However, following the soaks and closed humid Vivarium approach I've learned on this site the new growth is coming out smooth.

    Turtle Source clearly goes the other way. Their literature does speak of early hatchling soaks, but they warn strongly against any water source for Stars after hatchlinghood. All my Stars get in their water bowls regularly and I soak them all now.
  4. 19meyek

    19meyek New Member

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    I bought an eastern painted turtle hatchling from turtle shack and I only had her for 4 months before she died of metabolic bone disease and she was too far gone to be helped. She never ate no matter what it was, she had the best care for those 4 months though. There are over 80 complaints with the Better Business Bureau. By far this was the worst experience I have been through.
  5. ALDABRAMAN

    ALDABRAMAN KEEPER AT HEART 5 Year Member

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    Marc from Turtle Source has been a customer of ours for years and a well respected active member within the local Herp community. I know his inventory standards and business model exceeds most i have dealt with. I would not hesitate to purchase any tortoise or turtle from the Turtle Source!
  6. kathyth

    kathyth Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    I have 5 Mud turtles all oredered from Marc at Turtle Source. Received them as healthy hatchlings. All are thriving sub adults.

    Twice ainordered from Tortoise Shack.
    The Southen Painted I ordered was shipped as an Eastern Painted. Whatever.
    The Hermanns shipped as an Ibera Greek.
    I kept them and really like them, but there is something wrong with that.
    ALDABRAMAN likes this.
  7. bigbeaks

    bigbeaks Active Member 5 Year Member

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    I purchased from turtle source about 4 or 5 years ago. Both of the tortoises I received were NOT what I bought and paid for. I tried numerous times to allow them to make it right with them totally ignoring all of my messages and phone calls. One of those BBB complaints was mine!
  8. Tuzix - Ryan

    Tuzix - Ryan New Member

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    I've contacted The Turtle Source a few weeks ago asking if they could determine the sex of their 2.5 inch two year old High Orange Mississippi Map turtles for me. I also asked for pictures of the 2.5 inch ones, as I was looking to buy one. They said they cannot determine the sex of those until they are about 4-5 inches but right on their website they say they have FEMALE 2 inch yearling High Orange Mississippi Maps available.... They also said they can't send pics for copyright reasons... They don't even know what they're talking about because the pics they already have on their website aren't even copyrighted anyway. Why can't they put a watermark on it? They obviously don't know what they're doing. I think their turtles are probably sickly and that's why they won't send pics. Notice how every pic on their website is a carefully taken pic of the best turtles they've ever had. Rather than pics of their current stock. I also contacted them about the size of their yearling hypo pastel red eared sliders and have gotten no response... In my experience and from what I've read about others experiences I would avoid The Turtle Source.
  9. sherlock15

    sherlock15 Member

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    I got my tortoise from turtle source and he arrived healthy. It did take them awhile to contact us and a long time to answer any questions though.
  10. BlackFoxSun

    BlackFoxSun New Member

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    i bought a pearl river map turtle from The Turtle Source in feb of 2013 so almost 3 years i've had the turle and the turle whom i call Ronin has been healthy and super active since the day he arrived. it does seem to take up to a full day for them to respond to emails sometimes but they've always responded and answered any questions.
    ALDABRAMAN likes this.
  11. Archelon

    Archelon Member

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    I am new to this, so please take my comments as coming from an experienced reptile keeper who has VERY LITTLE experience with the RF and YF torts we recently acquired.
    I emailed The Turtle Source over the Christmas break but never got a reply. I decided to call them directly and form an impression from phone contact, assuming that they may have been backlogged with Christmas orders which is something I understand being in business myself. I spoke to Melanie who seemed very knowledgeable, and was very polite and accommodating – answering all of my MANY questions. I ordered a red foot and yellow foot combo of 12–14 week hatchlings which was a discounted deal they were offering. The torts arrived safely the next day, carefully packaged in separate padded containers inside of an insulated shipping container with a heat pack. Both babies were warm upon arrival in the winter, are very strong, outgoing, and curious. Both have very healthy appetites and are absolutely beautiful specimens. I have since read the mixed reviews here on TFO which may have dissuaded me from purchasing from The Turtle Source, Had I read them before placing my order. That said, we are very pleased with our experience with them and would likely order from them again in the future.
    ALDABRAMAN likes this.
  12. sue white

    sue white Member

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    I got my redfoot Finn a year ago from the Turtle Source and she was healthy and has done great. She's a tough little tort so that might be in their favor. They are terrible at answering e'mails or phones though.
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