Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

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Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

Postby Lawrence » Sat Dec 24, 2011 5:54 am

I have been researching Sternotherus odoratus "musk turtle" of North America and thinking of introducing them to my large reservoir.

I like the fact that they dont eat water-lilies or fish but rather snails and small crustaceans and that they remain relatively tiny and aquatic.

I cant though work out if they glide and swim around like other species do, this will make feeding easier?

If not I will have to introduce some shrimp and small lobster type creatures. Does anyone know if amongst the many sold in pet shops there are some that thrive but dont grow huge, the bright blue or bright red little true lobsters look good.

Thing is I have been burnt before with cute and pretty pet shop fancies that grew into monsters and started holding down and shredding my fish into bite sized bits. I had to drain and remove by the bucket full (local restaurant took most of them) a huge job that took a week and three strong men.

I have a few local wild species of shrimp in there like the blue glassy ones and the mossy green one but they are tiny and Im not sure if thats enough for a little herd of musk. These shrimp are very plentiful still in the mountain stream above me. Then there is the cherry shrimp that does very well I found except for the occasional mass die off that i cant work out at all.

I have large grassy (water grass) platforms just submerged for the turtles to frolic in and on if they are tired of the deep and wondered if that was enough for basking purposes. The other thing is do they need sandy areas. Im hoping to get only male or only female adults so they dont breed and infest local waterways.

On the last score I was previously thinking of going completely indigenous and eco sensitive as is my bent but unfortunately local turtle species are so endangered that either they are not available or so expensive that only irresponsible tycoons can lay their hands on any on the black market.

Anyone tried musk turtles there are a lot of hatchlings and juveniles around at the moment. I would go for adults if possible as I believe hatchlings are not that easy though the info is conflicting on this i think adults or at the most juveniles might be better.

Any info much appreciated

I though the little musk will do nicely?
Herd of growing torts, birds and dogs of course.
Lawrence
 
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Re: Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

Postby Lawrence » Wed Dec 28, 2011 11:57 am

No musk turtle keepers? Come on they look sooooo mini turtle cute? Americans call em stink pots though thy dont smell to me.
Herd of growing torts, birds and dogs of course.
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Re: Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

Postby Stuart » Wed Dec 28, 2011 1:42 pm

Lawrence wrote:No musk turtle keepers? Come on they look sooooo mini turtle cute? Americans call em stink pots though thy dont smell to me.


They can do if you pick them up...their natural defence is to void some rather smelly stuff from the rear end, I seem to remember...
Apart for that, I agree they are very cute...
Stuart
Hermanns (old female and 6 home-bred offspring), iberas (two), kbn (rescue), leopard, horsfield (rescue), stars (2 - long term loan), red-eared sliders (5)
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Re: Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

Postby Lawrence » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:58 pm

Oooh just as well I never play with turtles. Yep they are very cute. Im building up to these. Turtles as a whole are rather facinating, dont know why but I've always been a bit of a tortoise snob.
Herd of growing torts, birds and dogs of course.
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Re: Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

Postby Two » Fri May 25, 2012 2:27 pm

Hi, I have 2 Musk turtles, but they are housed indoor rather than outdoors. They are brilliant little creatures. They very rarely 'musk' only when they feel very threatened. Ours have only done it once when we first rescued them about 5 weeks ago. Unlike terrapins they don't grow very big. Similar to tortoises, they need uv light and a 'basking' spot. Somewhere with easy access out of the water. Unlike other turtles though, you'll probably find that Musks prefer to stay under the water for long lengths, often only sticking their noses out for air. Being nocturnal, they love to hide away during the day, so try to provide some little hidey caves. We've used some large plastic plant pots with a cut out hole in for this.

We feed ours Reptomin, with the occasional cooked prawn. pondweed, and dandelions. We have a couple of Plecks in the tank to keep the algae down and we are contemplating introducing a snail colony. Like tortoises, they benefit from having extra calcium in their diet. A light dusting of calcium powder/ Nutrobal on their food and some cuttlefish with the hard bit removed really help.

I'm not sure this has been of any use to you, as an outside environment varies greatly from an indoor tank. If you have Facebook, ask to join this group
http://www.facebook.com/groups/260251700727182/

It's Turtles Uk and Europe. All really friendly and helpful on there.
Good luck with the turtles, they are fascinating little things, and I'm sure you'll love them.
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Re: Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

Postby Highlands » Wed Jan 15, 2014 7:09 pm

Hi we have a pair of musk turtles. We keep them in a tank indoors. We have had them just over a year and got them as hatchlings. We drop blood worm into the tank and raw fish or dried food they are cute to watch they like climbing on things and spend all the time under the water just popping there nose out every twenty mins or so. They need water at about seventy one to seventy three dgs. :)
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Re: Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

Postby Highlands » Wed Jan 15, 2014 7:09 pm

Hi we have a pair of musk turtles. We keep them in a tank indoors. We have had them just over a year and got them as hatchlings. We drop blood worm into the tank and raw fish or dried food they are cute to watch they like climbing on things and spend all the time under the water just popping there nose out every twenty mins or so. They need water at about seventy one to seventy three dgs. :)
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Re: Thinking of introducing some musk turtles

Postby Lawrence » Sun Jun 22, 2014 6:38 am

Thanks for those replies. I put the musk turtle project on hold indefinately as some giant white herons moved in and Im almost sure they will swallow them. These are magnificent graceful birds so Im well pleased.

I had to lower the water to prevent the birds eating too many fish but this has meant the turtles wouldn't be ale to scramble out on the ledge to bask.

So as lovely as the musk is and as easy as they sound to keep Im concentrating on the tortoises instead.

Thanks again and sorry it took so long to respond.
Herd of growing torts, birds and dogs of course.
Lawrence
 
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