I HAVe a Map turtle that i have had for quite a while. a little while ago i cleaned out his tank which i do fairly frequently, and he started acting different. Hes done this before but never for such a long time, usually he will swim to my hand, let me hand feed him, play with my fingers in the water, etc. NOw he seems scared of me but i don tknow why, its winter now so maybe he is too cold? or is he just getting bored of his food? he used to eat all of his food and NEVER stop eating until i stoped giving the food, now hes eating less but still eating. i dont know what could be wrong or if hes sick. generally the internet says if an animal stops eating it is sick but he hasent stoped, hes jsut cut back and started acting more fearful
Map turtles tend to be more shy than many other types. A couple of things: you don't mention on your profile where you live. Is it getting colder there? Some species of map turtles do hibernate and you need to find out how to prepare him properly for that. I've seen books in the library about how to do it. It's more than just letting him slow down.
Also, it's good that you're keeping his water clean to avoid shell rot. What about a full spectrum light that is also important for his health? Temperature of the water? Does he have any sign of respiratory distress or eye infection? You may have to look for a vet that deals with herpetiles if you don't have one already.
Just as a thought; could it be an issue with the water? I don't know if you're using tap water, but a change in the consistency of the water could be an issue here (to much alkaline or hard minerals, for example).
Also, like ireno said, if you did suffer a sudden temperature change, this can also cause the pipes to contract or expand swiftly enough to allow particulates to be dislodged from the pipes, causing a temporary change in the consistency of your water.
Of course, if you're using bottled water...the above is unlikely to affect your turtle. :-)
I just got my NWRA (Nat'l Wildlife Rehabilitators Assoc.) Bulletin and they had a great article about preparing turtles for hibernation. There are 3 stages. Plus so much depends on the general health of the turtle to begin with, species and where you live. It's been years since I took my turtle rehab classes but I do know they're difficult to care for.
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