An aquarium for a red-eared turtle is a small ecosystem that you can create in your home with your own hands. When choosing the size and type of an aquarium, it is necessary to take into account the size of an adult animal and the characteristics of its body. This is a floating reptile, which, in addition to water, is vital for land, where it will bask and receive an ultraviolet tan. Land should be at least 25% of the terrarium. It should be securely fixed, and it is better to stick it to the base of the artificial reservoir, especially if there will be several turtles.
The volume of water in the aquarium is one of the most important points that you need to pay special attention to. Trachemys move and swim mainly underwater, where they feel safe, sometimes spending a long time at the bottom. In addition, the smaller the volume of water, the faster it becomes polluted, as a result of which the terrarium loses its decorative effect, and the turtle can simply become ill. For young individuals up to 10 cm in size, 100 liters of water is sufficient. And taking into account land and airspace, the volume of the terrarium should be approximately 150 liters. As the animal grows, the aquarium for the red-eared turtle will have to be replaced with a larger one. The more water there is in the pond, the longer it will remain clean and transparent, and the more comfortable the turtle will feel.
The arrangement of the land area also needs to be approached with due attention. Creating an island for the red-eared turtle, it is desirable to provide a convenient approach to it. The shore should not break abruptly, it is better if it is equipped with a ladder or a miniature gangway with a rough, but not scratching surface. It can also be a large stone or grotto, the slopes of which gradually flatten out to the very bottom of the aquarium. An ultraviolet lamp is located above the land, under which the turtle will dry the shell, bask and sunbathe. If the optimum water temperature for the red-eared turtle is approximately 25-280С, then above land it should be a couple of degrees higher. The island should be located about 30 cm below the edge of the terrarium, otherwise the animal can get out and run away.
When designing an aquarium for a red-eared turtle, you need to choose safe materials without sharp edges and corners, which pose a potential danger to the animal’s health. The soil covering the bottom should not be too shallow, because turtles sometimes swallow it, and, in addition, it becomes more dirty and poorly cleaned. It is better to use pebbles with a fraction of 5-6 cm. Living plants in such terrariums should not be used, since turtles eat them very quickly. They try to chew and artificial algae, but, realizing that it is inedible, they quickly lose interest in them. Therefore, in the underwater part, you can install plastic or silk plants with goods at the base, so that turtles could not tear them out of the ground. In the surface part, you can also place artificial vines. In addition, the decoration of the terrarium can serve as various snags, grottoes, fancy stones and other elements that will make the pond more picturesque and natural.
The aquarium for the red-eared turtle must be kept clean, because the health of the animal depends on the state of the water. Various filters are used to purify water, which allow maintaining its quality in a normal condition. In terrariums, it is better to use external filters, since the internal ones quickly become clogged with suspensions and lose their effectiveness. In addition, to maintain ecological balance in the aquarium, regular (once a week) replacement of half the volume of water will be required.
Caring for a red-eared turtle, like any other pet, requires some effort. But a terrarium with clean water, a picturesque bottom and healthy animals is a bewitching sight that is worth the time and effort.