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You better really want a turtle before you get one! I went with my family on a whim one day. I remember growing up, my friend always had a mini-turtle in a tiny tank and his name was Forest. I thought this turtle was the coolest pet. We even tried to cut school one day to head to Chinatown in New York City so we could buy our own. About 8 of us cut school and started walking to the train station. About half way down Greenwich Ave, our friend, who knew where to go and was paying for half of us to get there, was spotted by her mother (because we had to stop at a store to get cigarettes…) We all ran and our friend was taken back to school. With limited money, we all hopped the bus to Stamford and ended up in the news because some guy was stabbed in a restaurant and we had just got kicked out of the mall… but that’s an entirely different story.
This story is about me growing up and thinking mini-turtles are awesome and we should take the kids to Chinatown to explore. Also, if we happen to see a mini-turtle we could pick one up because they are so cute.
Guess what? We found mini-turtles and we bought 3 because my niece was with us too.
We brought the turtles home on the subway and then the train and no one said anything. Then we started to research them and did you know that these little turtles are actually illegal? When they are so small they are illegal to buy because they carry Salmonella and other diseases. I did not know that! Now, before you go on about how that’s illegal and I am part of the problem and blah, blah, blah… I honestly didn’t know. So, I am sorry to anyone who might be offended by this. I probably should have researched this BEFORE we went and then I probably wouldn’t have bought them.
A few months later we had my daughter’s birthday party at the aquarium and she told the host about our little turtle from Chinatown and luckily the host was like “oh, a rescue turtle”. Umm, yes. Unfortunately, two of our turtles died but one, Bob, survived. Not only did it survive but it grew and grew and now we have a huge tank downstairs with a filter and rocks and turtle food and it’s crazy. Moral of the story: do your research kids. Now every animal they want we have to research for a year and visit at a rescue shelter before we consider bringing one home.
Right now, girl wants a bunny and boy wants a parrot. They are researching but we did adopt them one each through the World Wild Life Fund for Christmas presents. They received plush animals and certificates of adoption for real ones. If they can prove they are responsible, take the time to learn about their animals and visit them and they still want one; we will probably get them one. Back to Bob the turtle. He’s a giant.
This is a list of allllll the things we have needed to buy for our mini chinatown turtle. Bob is a Red-Eared Slider Turtle.
We bought him a tank like this:
Aquatic Fundamentals 16751, 75/90 Gallon Upright Aquarium Stand
heater and lights:
Zoo Med Aquatic Turtle Uvb & Heat Lighting Kit
Zoo Med Turtle Tuff Splashproof Halogen Lamp 75 Watts
Century 7 Day Heavy Duty Digital Programmable Timer – Dual Outlet (Indoor)
EHEIM Jager Aquarium Thermostat Heater 300W
Zacro LCD Digital Aquarium Thermometer Fish Tank Water Terrarium Temperature
Fluval Canister Filter, FX4 Filter (250 Gal)
Fluval Carbon, 100-gram Nylon Bags – 3-Pack
Fluval BioMax (500g)
and he eats this food:
Tetra ReptoMin Aquatic Turtle, Newt and Frog Reptile Floating Food Sticks,10.59 Ounce
Fluker’s Buffet Blend Aquatic Turtle Food , 7.5-Ounce
Zoo Med Natural Aquatic Turtle Food, Maintenance Formula, 45-Ounce
Zacro Automatic Fish Feeder – Rechargeable Timer Fish Feeder with USB Charger Cable, Fish Food Dispenser for Aquarium or Fish Tank
Large Sun-dried Red Shrimp 10 oz. by Zoo Med
Water conditioner, because that’s a thing… Who knew?
Tetra 19514 ReptoGuard Water Conditioner Block, 6-Count
Zoo Med ReptiSafe Instant Terrarium Water Conditioner 8.75 FL. OZ. (Pack of 2)
Fluker Labs SFK43000 Eco Clean All Natural Reptile Waste Remover, 8-Ounce
A dock for his turtle butt:
ZM 40GAL TURTLE DOCK TD30
I seriously had no idea how much goes into taking care of a turtle. But I love Bob. I really do. And I better because he’s going to live forever. Okay, only 20 to 50 years…