Baby Box Turtle found after hibernation

Kelleyhamby

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I have two ornate box turtles in an outside enclosure. One of the females had a clutch over the winter. I've found one baby the size of a quarter. He is out and about. When do I need to bring this little one in and start caring for it? Or should I leave him in the outside enclosure and just feed it daily? When/how much will he eat? The mother is still hibernating. She uncovered herself but then covered herself back up. The other box is still totally covered. I don't know if we have any other babies as of yet. So I want to leave the enclosure alone until they bigger turtles are out. Is that wise or should I get the adults out of their holes and feed them? I've read that turtles don't typically eat for weeks after they come out. So when do I start putting food out there for them?
 

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Yvonne G

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If it were me, I would bring it inside right away. Birds will carry it off. You can't be sure he'll get enough moisture to keep his body from drying out inside. You won't know if he's eating if you leave him outside.

I start feeding baby box turtles right away. I soak them in warm water daily, and add blood worms to the soaking water. While they're soaking, I prepare their food (chopped up into very, very tiny pieces), then when the soak is over, I place them in front of the food and quickly step out of sight.
 

Kelleyhamby

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If it were me, I would bring it inside right away. Birds will carry it off. You can't be sure he'll get enough moisture to keep his body from drying out inside. You won't know if he's eating if you leave him outside.

I start feeding baby box turtles right away. I soak them in warm water daily, and add blood worms to the soaking water. While they're soaking, I prepare their food (chopped up into very, very tiny pieces), then when the soak is over, I place them in front of the food and quickly step out of sight.

The enclosure is actually safe from predators. It's an 8X10 garden box with two huge lids covering it. I have been keeping it in the enclosure and taking him out to feed and then putting him back. He's not eating anything but I did catch him in water this morning when I went out to get him. He is burying himself up at night to stay warm. It's really actually sort of cute. I just don't know when he'll start having an appetite and if it's normal for him to not eat after being born. Any idea as to how old he might be? I've attached a picture to the original thread. I have been attempting to feed him meal worms. But alas he doesn't want them yet! :(
 

Yvonne G

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They normally hatch in September, so he's 6 or 7 months old.
 

Kelleyhamby

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They normally hatch in September, so he's 6 or 7 months old.

So here's my next question. I've tried to do the math on this. We were given these two turtles. Both said to be females...in July 2017. So were they carrying these fertilized eggs when we got them or do you think one of these turtles is a male?!? 70 days to fertilize and 70 days to lay. Hum....
 

Becca267

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I think turtles can carry sperm for a long time after matting and could lay fertile eggs for years.
 

mark1

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my guess would be the eggs were probably laid in late summer or early fall 2017 , the hatchlings overwintered in the ground ..... as Yvonne said , bringing them in would be their best chance ......
 

Loohan

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They normally hatch in September, so he's 6 or 7 months old.
Is that so? Sorry to derail the thread. But i found my little 3-toe Rorg early Aug 2014 and this is how he looked. Rorg.jpg

No trace of a yolk sac. I always assumed he must have hatched out a few months prior but would he actually have been a year old almost?
His shell was about the size of a quarter; it just looks bigger due to perspective.
 

mark1

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by me they lay eggs in early summer (may) hatching out in late summer , some late nest going into the fall , some do seem to overwinter in the nest .......... i'm sure the climate has some bearing on it ...... earlier springs would mean earlier hatching ...... I see folks on here talking about spring , my box turtles are still nearly a month away from making an appearance ........ I would agree the one you got there is a couple months old
 

Eric Phillips

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by me they lay eggs in early summer (may) hatching out in late summer , some late nest going into the fall , some do seem to overwinter in the nest .......... i'm sure the climate has some bearing on it ...... earlier springs would mean earlier hatching ...... I see folks on here talking about spring , my box turtles are still nearly a month away from making an appearance ........ I would agree the one you got there is a couple months old
Might be 2 months if we keep seeing this weather:( lol!
 

mark1

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it's still pretty cold here too , 30's and 20's , and looks like it's not warming up anytime soon .......
 

terryo

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If I find any babies in the Spring. I bring them right it. I keep them inside in a planted vivarium for at least 2 years. Then they go outside in a Juvenal garden, and when they are 3 or 4 they go in with the big kids. I like to keep them all about the same size if I can. The males tend to be a little food aggressive with the smaller ones and they never seem to get their fair share of food. At this age they will need a lot of humidity and moist WARM leaf litter or moss to dig into. Look on TurtleTails.com for some great pictures of planted vivariums for baby box turtles.
 

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