Baby Eastern Box Turtle Help

ratbones7

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Keep your temperatures at around 80 through out the whole enclosure. Find some dried leaves (leaf litter) and put them on one end of the tank and throw in lots of pill bugs and small red wigglers. He may not eat for a few days or even two weeks. AT this time of the year they slow down no matter what you do. I would suggest a heat emitter in the middle of the tank and a long tube 5.0 UVB in back of the heat emitter. Get a screen top and put the heat emitter with a ceramic fixture on top and the long tube 5.0 UVB. Then cover the rest of the screen top with clear wrapping tape. Put a flat rock or piece of slate under the heat emitter for feeding. Spray the tank once a day, and pour some water all around. Low light, warm humidity and leaf litter to dig into. Every couple of days take him out and put him in a little tub of warm water to soak and add some water turtle pellets and any little worm or whatever you feed him. Put the little tub into the tank where it's warm and leave him there for a while so he can eat. This is how I start off babies. It's not written in stone and it's only what I've been doing for over 30 years. Hope it helps.
thanks for reply. i got him basically setup up exactly like that now. no eating yesterday or this morning. will try again when i get home. how long can they go without eating? sometimes i think i should keep the temps up and just leave him alone. also...does anyone know if he did have photo conjunctivitus...how long recovery would take? thanks
 

mariellen

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When you soak him try putting in achunk of frozen blood worms. My babies always love them.
 

ratbones7

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took him to vet today. not much to say. eyes looked clear. he just wont eat and getting weaker. he said keep doin what i'm doing. i gave him a pedialyte soak today. i think he drank some. gonna try some baby food tonight. will try the blood worms too. thanks.
 

ratbones7

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Still has not eaten that I have seen. Soak 2x a day in pedialyte/water. Doing frozen bloodworms now in there. Present him with all kinds of food every day. Weak & lethargic. Perks up in soak sometimes...mostly just to try to get out. I put him back in his home and he just crawls to shelter and sleeps. Whole enclosure temp range 80-90deg

I just hope I can get him to end of March/April. I think if I can get him back outside he'll make it.
 

ratbones7

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Well it sucks for my son & daughter. My son is nuts about turtles and one reason we were given this little guy. Appreciate all the help and if anyone got ideas...i'm listening! Thinking maybe I bump temps up even higher? How long can he go without food? I do think he drinks in soaks.
 

Eric Phillips

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Well it sucks for my son & daughter. My son is nuts about turtles and one reason we were given this little guy. Appreciate all the help and if anyone got ideas...i'm listening! Thinking maybe I bump temps up even higher? How long can he go without food? I do think he drinks in soaks.

If your temp is pushing 90 its too hot for an Eastern. I'm not so concerned about the temp as long as it's range is between 70-85(can digest food properly), however I am concerned about keeping the humidity up near 80-90% for a hatchling. I would mist the food before feeding, present it near or in hide and see if that makes a difference. When my humidity drops so does my turtles appetite. In the wild you will always find EBT's out in about after a rain storm or early morning.dew and moisture. I personally don't think you need to soak your hatchling twice a day if it has access to water in its enclosure. Once a day should be fine. Another idea would to change the pattern to which you present food. Your hatchlings clock maybe different from yours. Maybe instead of feeding it in the morning try presenting the food before you go to bed. I generally change out the water dish before I go to bed so they have fresh water before I even get up and then feed them in the wee morning hours. Just a suggestion, but definitely try misting the food.
 

ratbones7

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@ratbones7 How is your baby?
Meh. The same. I been really misting and keeping it real wet. I put a worm in front of him last night and he kind of went for it. Took one bite at it and gave up and went and hid. I was excited, but no. Nothing today. I been noticing a weird head twitch hes been doing too. Like a quick flinch every once in a while. thanks.
 

ratbones7

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things are still really the same. he takes his soaks and i'm pretty sure he drinks a bunch. with pedialyte i guess he gets some nutrition. i brought humidity way up and it's really wet on hot side at all times. i kept temps about 85 during day and 70-75 at night. i think i'm going to bring em up on the hot side.

question now is....i think if i can just get this guy back outside, he might make it. problem is im in NJ and temps are brutal right now. do you tink i can put him back in his outdoor pen near end of march if temps get around 50-60? im praying march warms up fast.
 

TortsNTurtles

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Have you tried keeping the lights on for 14 hours? Have you tried the venison or dog food with venison terryo recommend? If your turtle is used to high temperatures be careful putting your turtle out in the spring in the lower temps. That you don't shock it if it's used to the higher temperatures indoors.
 

ratbones7

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ive tried it all. sometimes i think i messed him up by changing it up too much. like maybe if i just kept it consistent. anyways, thanks...when do you think is a good time to put a ebt back outside?
 

Ciri

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50 to 60°F is going to be too cold – he'll just going to hibernate and at this point it would only stress his system. Wait until spring has truly sprung, and then you can start by getting the little hatchling outside during the daytime when it's warm enough (75° plus Fahrenheit). The temperatures you have indoors are great, and I'm sure your little one will come around and be hungry in the spring. When I have kept mine indoors, there has always been a lag time in the middle of winter, usually January into February, when it was really tough to get them to eat. After that their system wakes up and it gets a lot easier. Just hang in there – it's almost March. I know you guys have had a tough time back there this winter. It will into eventually – it always does.
 

ratbones7

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thanks. that makes me feel better. im hell bent on getting this guy to the spring. we have an adult out in a huge pen too. i'll wait until she emerges.
 

ratbones7

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so last evening after work.... he seemed a little more awake (not totally dug in) when i picked him up to soak. i gave him his a soak with pedialyte. i dropped in a small red worm after about 10 minutes. not interested. then i emptied dish and left him with just the worm...misted him a bit. he went after worm a lil bit, took one bite at it...then it slid underneath him and stayed there. i didn't want to move him or drop another in front of him because then he gets spooked and goes and hides. he looked around and then just gave up. man so close. when i try to put him back in front of worm....he lost interest. it seems almost like he forgets how to eat.
 

Loohan

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will do. thanks. would still like to know how long anyone has seen one go without eating?

My baby 3-toed boxie baby (closely related to EBTs) went at least 2 months without eating (mainly due to my failure to provide long winter photoperiod). He never seemed ill, though.
Once he started eating again, he became much stronger and faster in his movements, and is now growing again and doing well.
 

TortsNTurtles

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Are you able to see him? Is he in a tank vivarium or a plastic type tub? Is it possible he is hunting up worms when not looking? I place pile of worms on my turtles tile and walk away. They will sometimes eat on the slate and other times take the worm and run for cover to eat under the plants. I also will see them eating a worm that got away throughout the day. I toss in a few crickets every so often and they disappear.
 
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