Identification: The Painted Turtle
is identified by yellow band that extends from the nostrils to behind the eyes. The male
is identified by it's black body, black carapace (brown in younger specimens) and bright
red coloured plastron. In elderly specimens the plastron is creamy with patches of white.
Flushes of red appear on the skin areas as well. Females have a brown carapace and grey
coloured skin. Like the male, the plastron is bright red especially in younger specimens.
Red is evident on the skin areas as well. Both the male and female have two barbels under
their chin. Males obtain a length of approx 15cm, and females total shell length of 24cm.
"I,m Tropical. Get me home quick. I need to be
put in my tank on arrival with temperatures preset to 28-29oC!!! The Painted
Turtle comes from the tropical far north of Australia, so therefore requires a
year round water temperature of 28-29oC. It is imperative that your tank is set
up 48 hours prior to taking your baby Turtle home from the Pet Shop so you can be 100%
sure that the temperatures are correct, and everything is working fine. (Adult Painted
Turtles can tolerate water temperatures of 25-26oC) A minimum tank size for one
adult Painted Turtle would be 120cm long x 60cm x 60cm, but it is fine to
start with a smaller tank, but aim to upgrade within 2-3 years of purchase. I would
recommend purchasing only one as they can be very territorial when they mature.Even though females show less colour than the males, they are still very
Like all Turtles, the Painted Turtle requirements
are the same (UVB light, basking heat lamp, heater, filter, great variety of food).
Make sure that your UVB bulb is changed as per the manufacturers recommendations, and
there is no perspex cover on your light fitting. If there is, remove this as it will
filter all of the UVB that your Turtle requires. A 60 watt basking bulb is recommended
over the basking area. This will entice your Painted Turtle to bask as
well as fully drying out its shell. A good quality aquarium heater is required to keep the
water at the desired temperature. I use canister filters with spray bars attached. This
avoids your Turtle from getting pushed around a bit to much, especially when young. Hot
House Turtles frozen Turtle Food is formulated specifically for Turtles we keep
here in New Zealand, and is what we raise all of our Turtles on. By also giving sparingly
once a day some Fluker's Gourmet River Shrimps or Freeze Dried River Shrimps
will enhance your Painted Turtles stunning colours as these foods are
natural colour enhancers.Male Painted Turtles exhibit more vibrant colours than the females.
Just like the Snake-neck Turtles, the Painted
Turtles are particularly susceptible to ammonia poisoning, so large weekly water
changes are essential to avoid them getting ill. When performing your water change, ensure
that you add some hot water to your tank before reintroducing your Turtle. This avoids any
drastic temperature shock on your Turtle.
The Painted Turtle is a very personable
and semi hardy Turtle, and is ideal for those who want to keep something different,
however they do fetch quite a high price tag as they are currently bred in very low