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Eastern Mud Turtle

Discussion in 'Water turtles' started by iloveturtles88, Aug 3, 2019.

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  1. iloveturtles88

    iloveturtles88 Member 5 Year Member

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    Can i see pictures of your Eastern Mud turtle tank? How much water do i need for my Eastern Mud turtles? I'm trying to figure out how to do the tank. I have been told they are poor swimmers and i noticed this little one can't get on the basking/land area when trying to get out of the water. It's the size of a nickel. It also hasn't ate anything yet. I want the best for it, this is my first aquatic turtle so any ideas and any suggestions will be helpful.

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  2. Moozillion

    Moozillion Well-Known Member 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    Oh MY! That is a very tiny baby, indeed- and a real cutie!!!:):<3:

    I had an Eastern Mud Turtle, although she was about twice that size when I got her.
    The mud turtles don't have big webbed feet, so they can't paddle to swim very well. In the wild they are seen walking along the bottoms of shallow creeks and ponds, and climbing the vegetation.
    It will be very important to make sure your baby has plenty things it can use to climb to the surface: fake plants, fake logs, real plants, etc.
    How big is your tank?
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  3. Moozillion

    Moozillion Well-Known Member 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    If you go to the thread "Jacques the Eastern Mud Turtle" you will see my juvenile eastern mud turtle in the habitat I had for her.
    She was in a 20 gallon long tank and the water was no deeper than 4 inches, with lots of fake plants and fake logs, and caves for her to hide in.
    BUT she was twice the size of your turtle (or maybe a little more), so I'm not sure- you might need shallower water and a smaller tank than that.

    Pastel Tortie has some baby musk turtles: their care is very similar to the mud turtles.

    Also, if you go to a website called Austin's Turtle Page and search under mud and musk turtle care, that guy has very good summaries.
    Good luck, and keep us posted! :)

    @Pastel Tortie
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  4. Pastel Tortie

    Pastel Tortie Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    We have a number of members who keep mud and musk turtles. I'm pleased to say their popularity seems to be increasing, as it's getting harder to remember who keeps what! :p

    Let's see...

    @Russian Rehab keeps common musk turtles, also known as stinkpots. She has a breeding pair that are producing extremely well this year, so I think she's dealing with hatchlings right now, too.

    @Christyk has a young Mississippi mud turtle hatchling named Cheese. Mississippi muds are another subspecies of Eastern mud turtle.

    I have two juvenile three-striped mud turtles. Bold and Pinstripe are currently in a 20 long tank, but they will soon be moving to a 40 breeder tank. I have some of their housing details (from when they were tiny) in their thread.

    @Moozillion currently keeps Nelson, a young Razorback musk turtle. Many of us came to adore Jacques, her Eastern mud turtle, through her entertaining posts. She's also getting ready to take on a young, special needs common musk turtle.

    I've been running errands, but I'll post some links to online resources when I'm home.
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  5. Pastel Tortie

    Pastel Tortie Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    This thread may be helpful:
    https://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/baby-mud-turtle.175952/
    I'm copying some (below) from what I posted in the above referenced thread:

    Pictures of your turtle and its setup will help us troubleshoot.

    In the meantime, the resources below should get you started.

    MUD TURTLES - Kinosternon species

    I keep two Kinosternon baurii - Three Striped Mud Turtles - and they are now around a year old. Although you might keep a different species of mud turtle, the guidance available online for three striped mud turtles is the most detailed. It is conservative, but conservative will serve both you and your turtle well over the next several months.

    Hatchling mud turtles are tiny... and delicate. I think I only stopped worrying QUITE so much a few months ago, when my smallest turtle hit the 2" mark.

    Austin's Turtle Page - solid, reliable information, with very detailed info on three striped mud turtle hatchlings
    http://www.austinsturtlepage.com/Care/caresheet-3_striped_mud.htm

    David Kirkpatrick's article on Striped Mud Turtles - http://www.turtlerescues.com/striped_mud_turtles.htm

    http://www.chelonia.org/Articles/kinosternidaecare.htm

    http://www.turtlerescues.com/mud_and_musk_turtles.htm
  6. Pastel Tortie

    Pastel Tortie Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    Shallow water is very important right now. Drowning is the first main risk for the next few months. With other types of turtle hatchlings, the guidance is to make sure the deepest part is deep enough for the turtle to be able to right itself, if it winds up upside down. However, this doesn't hold true for mud turtle hatchlings. They seem to have a hard time righting themselves underwater. Read the articles and care sheets linked above for more information and good recommendations for how to keep your baby through this fragile hatchling stage.

    The second big risk for a tiny mud turtle (or any tiny turtle/tortoise) is overheating, which can be fatal to a hatchling in a short period of time. Make sure you have a handle on the temperatures throughout the enclosure. The temperatures (both air/land and water) are going to be one of your biggest headaches for the next few months.

    The good news is that if you can work some good commercial pellets into your hatchling's diet, you don't have to worry about UVB right now.
  7. Pastel Tortie

    Pastel Tortie Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    When my turtles were little (tiny), I had good luck with the Zoo Med Natural Aquatic Turtle Hatchling Formula. These are tiny pellets. Get a small container of it, as your turtle will most likely outgrow the food before he/she finishes the container.

    My turtles also liked the Reptomin Pro Juvenile formula. These are short sticks. They soften quickly in water, yet hold together well, and the small sticks make good size targets for clumsy hatchlings. :)

    The Hikari Sinking Carnivore Pellets (in the fish food section) seems to be the consistent winner in the mud and musk turtle taste tests. Even picky turtles can often be won over by this pellet. The only down side is that it's more expensive (shop around and price match), but with just the one hatchling, your first bag should last for a while. I'd keep this one in reserve, though. See if your baby will accept the less expensive options first.

    Mud turtles can be reluctant to accept pellets. Your hatchling may need something wriggling to recognize as food. Earthworms (red wigglers) are hard to turn down. You can cut them up into smaller pieces, which tend to go over well with hatchlings. They're a healthy option and a natural food for your turtle to eat. If your turtle will eat them, feed him red wigglers, while still trying to work commercial pellets into the diet.
  8. Pastel Tortie

    Pastel Tortie Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    Your hatchling needs to be in water to eat. Most aquatic turtles need to be in water to be able to swallow food. There are exceptions (wood turtles, box turtles, some mud turtles), but even the exceptions often prefer to eat in water.

    Feed outside the enclosure in a small container. For Bold and Pinstripe, I used small plastic ramekins from the dollar store. Put warm (not hot) water in the container and add some pellets to soften before you add the turtle. Usually the turtle will eat and poop right there in the container.
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