Shedding or Shell Rot?

TortoiseWoman

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Feb 20, 2017
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This is a 4-5 month old Mississippi Map turtle. He did not have this when I got him about 2 months ago. It's been there for several weeks and is probably a little more obvious now than in this picture. I dried his shell in this picture too, just so you know. The spots aren't soft and some seem like the scute is coming up. He's grown pretty fast in the time I've had him (he keeps eating food for the musk so I want to move him to another tank, but not before I'm sure this isn't something contagious) so I'm thinking he's just shedding and growing too fast.
What do ya'll think?
Thanks
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Anthony P

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Thanks for the heads up, @wellington

I don't think we are looking at shell rot here, although it is possible that it might be starting under there. Not likely at all, though.

These deposits could be due to water quality, and are VERY common in Graptemys. These guys live in moving water that is usually pretty clean, with really good basking opportunities. It can be tough to replicate all of that in captivity. Shedding issues are super common.

I would recommend using a pellet high in vitamin E, like Wheat Germ to aid in shedding.

I have only ever raised Graptemys with pretty shells when keeping them outdoors, never indoors..
 

TortoiseWoman

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Thank you for the info. That makes me feel better. I'll give him a go in the 110 gallon then. The water temp is a little lower but I don't think it will be a big deal. Summer is coming and this room always warms up some, therefore so will the tank water. My Northern Black Knobbed eats Wheat Germ in his pellet mixture so I'll feed it to this one too. I'm hoping his shell will do better in the 110 as it has great filtration/water quality. I guess I got lucky with my Black Knobbed as he never had any shell issues. :)
Thanks again!
 

cdmay

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Thanks for the heads up, @wellington

I don't think we are looking at shell rot here, although it is possible that it might be starting under there. Not likely at all, though.

These deposits could be due to water quality, and are VERY common in Graptemys. These guys live in moving water that is usually pretty clean, with really good basking opportunities. It can be tough to replicate all of that in captivity. Shedding issues are super common.

I would recommend using a pellet high in vitamin E, like Wheat Germ to aid in shedding.

I have only ever raised Graptemys with pretty shells when keeping them outdoors, never indoors..


Agree. There are a number of turtle species in addition to Graptemys that seem to require outdoor keeping to achieve 'perfect' appearing shells. For example, no matter how hard I've tried, I cannot get Reeve's turtles, or any of the Pelusios side-neck turtles to have pristine looking shells in my aquariums regardless of the filtration and water changes. Mind you, these are 'easy' species to keep and maintain, but for me achieving perfectly clean shells with them is tough.
As Anthony pointed out, Graptemys bask in full sun like crazy and also live in places where the water flows constantly.
In your case you little guy seems OK although he does have some minor shell issues. These places will indeed shed away in time though.
 
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