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Old 11-28-17, 03:46 PM   #1 (permalink)
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What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

I am in the process of building a new paludarium for my diamondback terrapin (and possibly a red eared slider, if they get along, that has outgrown an acquaintance's enclosure and needs a new home.) and I'm looking for advice for other inhabitants. I have a few ideas myself but I'm interested to see what others might come up with. Friendly and handle-able is preferable but not required.

The system design is very flexible at this time aside from the footprint.
The inside dimensions are 72" x 27"(13.5 sqft), the bottom/aquatic section (freshwater) is 26" deep. The solid ground area will be irregularly shaped/distributed but will be roughly 8 sqft (water goes back underneath the land to provide maximum space for the turtle(s). The upper/terrarium section will be 3-4ft tall so there will be plenty of room for arboreal inhabitants. I can make it so the turtles have a roughly 2 sqft cave like basking area (equipped with their uva/uvb basking lights etc..) and limited access to the rest of the ground/terrarium area if that is preferable. (There really is no limit to what can be done with regard to the system design.)
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Old 11-29-17, 09:07 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

Sounds similar to an enclosure that I recently built.
Unfortunately, turtles will try to consume almost anything you put in with them. Even a large snake will end up with a nipped off tail, best case scenario.
Lizards, tree frogs, fish- anything will be a potential victim for the turtles.
If it were me, I would focus on the diamondback terrapins, and nice looking, turtle-safe plants.
Red-ears can be bullies, I would not mix them with another species.
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Old 11-29-17, 11:20 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

Thanks Herpin' Man!

I know turtles are pretty nippy which is why I was leaning towards arboreal companions. Since the diamondbacks really only come out of the water to bask, and I had planned to setup their basking area in an isolated corner of the enclosure; I figured primarily arboreal tank/cage-mates wouldn't really cross paths with them.

With regard to the Red-ear, I appreciate your advice and I'm equally concerned with the potential for bullying. The only reason I'm seriously considering it is that I have a few friends who have mixed groups of diamondbacks and red-ears which are very peaceful and no issues. I don't know which way I will end up going on this, I'm honestly pretty torn. I want to add another turtle when I upgrade to this new (over 200 gal) system and my friends red-ear really needs a new home (5 inch and he's got it in a 15 gal with another 4 inch turtle), but I don't want to end up with it bullying my terrapins... Don't know what I'm gonna end up doing.
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Old 11-29-17, 11:56 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

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Thanks Herpin' Man!

I know turtles are pretty nippy which is why I was leaning towards arboreal companions. Since the diamondbacks really only come out of the water to bask, and I had planned to setup their basking area in an isolated corner of the enclosure; I figured primarily arboreal tank/cage-mates wouldn't really cross paths with them.

With regard to the Red-ear, I appreciate your advice and I'm equally concerned with the potential for bullying. The only reason I'm seriously considering it is that I have a few friends who have mixed groups of diamondbacks and red-ears which are very peaceful and no issues. I don't know which way I will end up going on this, I'm honestly pretty torn. I want to add another turtle when I upgrade to this new (over 200 gal) system and my friends red-ear really needs a new home (5 inch and he's got it in a 15 gal with another 4 inch turtle), but I don't want to end up with it bullying my terrapins... Don't know what I'm gonna end up doing.
Step 1: Find a turtle rescue for your friend
Step 2: Pick a species you want
Step 3:???
Step 4: Profit
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Old 11-29-17, 03:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

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Originally Posted by Aaron_S View Post
Step 1: Find a turtle rescue for your friend
Step 2: Pick a species you want
Step 3:???
Step 4: Profit
Step 1: Yeah, I'm leaning more and more in the direction of finding a turtle rescue for my friend the more I think about it... Especially since he has a second smaller one and will be in the same place again in 6 months or so and I don't really want to end up with them.

Step 2: When you say pick a species I want, are you referring to what to keep in the upper arboreal area? If so, of course I will, but I'm looking for more ideas/options before I pick something.

not sure what to say to the rest... lol
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Old 11-30-17, 10:19 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

One other thing to consider, if you still want to try mixing turtles and snakes, is salmonella. The snake will be drinking turtle water.
I have been keeping both turtles and snakes for many years, without issue. I rarely even think about salmonella, but then, I wash my hands between working with different species. But years ago, I knew a couple of guys that kept an obscene amount of turtles in their apartment. They had a few snakes, too, but the snakes were always sick. Always puking and dying. Salmonella and poor hygiene were the likely suspects.
Regarding red ears and bullying- I too had a large community turtle pond. Everybody coexisted peacefully for years. Until two red-ears ganged up on a painted turtle (which was larger than the red ears) and killed it. They ate it, too. It was my daughter's painted, and I hated having to explain that one. There is no way I would ever put a red ear with anything other than red ears, ever again.
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Old 11-30-17, 10:52 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

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Originally Posted by Michael H View Post
Step 1: Yeah, I'm leaning more and more in the direction of finding a turtle rescue for my friend the more I think about it... Especially since he has a second smaller one and will be in the same place again in 6 months or so and I don't really want to end up with them.

Step 2: When you say pick a species I want, are you referring to what to keep in the upper arboreal area? If so, of course I will, but I'm looking for more ideas/options before I pick something.

not sure what to say to the rest... lol

I was talking about adding additional turtle species. I am against intermixing of species in the same habitat. Purely for the ease of care keeping them separately.

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Originally Posted by Herpin' Man View Post
One other thing to consider, if you still want to try mixing turtles and snakes, is salmonella. The snake will be drinking turtle water.
I have been keeping both turtles and snakes for many years, without issue. I rarely even think about salmonella, but then, I wash my hands between working with different species. But years ago, I knew a couple of guys that kept an obscene amount of turtles in their apartment. They had a few snakes, too, but the snakes were always sick. Always puking and dying. Salmonella and poor hygiene were the likely suspects.
Regarding red ears and bullying- I too had a large community turtle pond. Everybody coexisted peacefully for years. Until two red-ears ganged up on a painted turtle (which was larger than the red ears) and killed it. They ate it, too. It was my daughter's painted, and I hated having to explain that one. There is no way I would ever put a red ear with anything other than red ears, ever again.
That's a crazy *** story.
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Old 11-30-17, 11:12 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

How about a couple stinkpots (Sternotherus odoratus)? They're small and probably wouldn't give your turtles any trouble.

If you want, you could try to throw in some anoles or tree frogs, but you'd have the constant chance of them being eaten. They will make their way down to the water's edge at some point, and then there's nothing stopping the turtles from snatching them. Especially during feeding time. I used to have a red-eared in an outdoor enclosure, and every time I'd get crickets for a couple other pets, I'd throw the leftovers to the turtle. Over time, the anoles figured it out and would storm the enclosure once I dumped the crickets, but occasionally my turtle would grab a lizard and eat it. Just something to think about.
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Old 12-01-17, 08:14 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

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Originally Posted by Bandit View Post
How about a couple stinkpots (Sternotherus odoratus)? They're small and probably wouldn't give your turtles any trouble.

If you want, you could try to throw in some anoles or tree frogs, but you'd have the constant chance of them being eaten. They will make their way down to the water's edge at some point, and then there's nothing stopping the turtles from snatching them. Especially during feeding time. I used to have a red-eared in an outdoor enclosure, and every time I'd get crickets for a couple other pets, I'd throw the leftovers to the turtle. Over time, the anoles figured it out and would storm the enclosure once I dumped the crickets, but occasionally my turtle would grab a lizard and eat it. Just something to think about.
I'd love to keep musk turtles, they are the turtles I really wanted. But my daughter fell in love with my friends diamondbacks so... I wouldn't be concerned with musks bothering the diamondbacks, but I would be worried about the diamondbacks bothering the musks... I wonder if anyone has tried mixing them...

Anoles was actually one of my leading ideas for the upper area. I have a design in mind for the enclosure which would nearly eliminate them being able to interact with the turtles too. (turtles basking spot in a cave in rock formation in one corner, water return from filter returns at top of formation creating waterfall and little river isolating the cave side of the rocks from the rest of the cage and providing a water source for upper inhabitants. Remaining land raised up from the water to prevent turtles access.)
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Old 12-02-17, 11:18 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: What can I keep in the paludarium with my turtles?

Turtles carry ambedaisis which is will infect your snakes if you keep them together. If you can get a colony of tree frogs breeding in your tank, that you don't mind occasionally becoming food, that may work. dont use a dbt, they are brackish. I would such as mud and musk turtles that would stay near the bottom, however stay far away from giant musks which are very predatory.
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