Animal Stories - African Side-necked Turtle


Animal-World Information about: African Side-necked Turtle

   With a naturally upturned "smile" and a pug nose, the African Side-necked Turtle has a great face!
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Kiki - 2012-05-20
My African side neck has a red nose ? It hasn't been like this long. I was cleaning its tank when I noticed this. So I'm wondering if he's having a respiratory problem or something? I'm kinda concerned cause I dont want him to be sick or anything :(

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  • karmal - 2013-07-10
    Mine is having the same issue. I'm worried about it.
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carri - 2013-06-20
wondering if the heat lamp needs to be on all the time? nighttime too? what about UV lamp, on all the time? my turtle doesn't bask either. i put a large rock for it to climb onto, with gravel all around so wont damage shell, but it just hides under rock in the water. sometimes just stays under water. it did manage to escape the tank because of filter open area, can they be without water? are they supposed to have lots of water? I'm a bit overwhelmed. we inherited from a friend who didnt want anymore.

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  • Clarice Brough - 2013-06-21
    Nice pet, and very cool to get! Ideally the water should be 8-10' and well filtered. They do live in the water most of the time, although they (like other turtles) can roam on land some, and will come out to bask, utilizing the sun to absorb vitamins. The UV light is necessary for their health, it's our captive alternative to sunlight.  But your turtle doesn't need the basking light or the UV light kept on all day and at night, as in nature they would only be in the sun during the daytime. If the environement is too cold however, their metabolism will slow down, so using a regular basking light will provide some warmth. A red or black basking light at night can also provide some warmth at night (they can't see those lights so they are non-intrusive to the turtle at night). Of course with it being summer time, that's probably not an issue right now. Good luck to you both, I think you'll really enjoy that little guy:)
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Adrian Villasenor - 2013-05-17
I've had my a.s.t. for about 9 months and I had it in a 20g tank and it was fine, it swam and ate and played around with my r.e.s. I recently purchased a 40g tank for both of them and it seems like its sick it won't eat all it does is bask so after about a month I separated it from the turtle and put it back in the 20g tank shallow water and dirt and it burys it self in the dirt does anybody know why it does that

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  • Clarice Brough - 2013-05-18
    They do like to bury themselves in the mud or sand. In the wild they do this especially during dry seasons, and a female will do this to lay her eggs. But some do seem to just like to bury themselves in captivity. Some more important things are to make sure your African Sideneck is eating and basking.
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Jodi Bauer - 2013-05-05
We have had our Side-neck for about 3 years now. She started out happy and swimming around and would greet us everyday. Over the past year she has started to hide from everyone. She stays under her rock and doesn't come out even if you feed her. we used to be able to hold her but now she tucks in and tries to get away. Her water temp is about 77 and the basking temp is about 85. Any ideas as to what could be wrong???

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  • Clarice Brough - 2013-05-05
    Because you've had the African Side-necked Turtle for a good amount of time, that's a difficult question to answer. These turtles are shy, and often jump into the water and tuck in their heads when in a new home, but that doesn't make sense for yours. It sounds like you take good care of yours and have a good environment for it. What comes to my mind is they are known to be group baskers, so I wonder if it could be becoming more of a recluse because it is isolated. Don't know for sure, but it does make me wonder.
  • Zach - 2013-05-13
    I hope your turtle feels better and I have two maybe your turtle is lonesome my first was.
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TurtleBloop - 2013-02-26
i have a female ASNT *CRUSH* who is very active, she rather me hand feed her though must watch my fingers, she doesn't eat green colored sticks, but will eat the red ones. She loves bananas, Anacharis plant, i have her housed in a 30 gal breeding tanking with my male YBS *SQUIRT* they get along well. she can be aggressive but with bigger size tank less of it. she an amazing active turtle who loves to beg me. My turtles become more active when i at tank over anyone else. Overall i love my turtles very much

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I wuv turtles - 2012-12-01
Can anyone help me my African side neck hasn't eaten in about 3 weeks, his nose is red, and he's not swimming..... I've had him for 3 years and he has never done this before CAN ANYONE HELP??? :(

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  • Charlie Roche - 2012-12-01
    Can't know for sure but possibly a respiratory infection.  You might want to take to vet and get some antibiotics.
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Liz - 2012-11-13
I just recently acquired 2 asn turtles and I am pretty sure one is female and the other is male. At what age do they start breeding? I would like to keep them in the same tank but I don't want them to breed? Is there anything I can do to keep them from breeding when they become adults or will I need to put them in seperate tanks when they get older?

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  • Jeremy Roche - 2012-11-13
    Depending on diet and environmet sexual maturity can vary.  It will range between 3 anf 5 years.  Breeding isn't guaranteed if kept together.  The only sure way to prevent this is to seperate them.
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Todd - 2011-08-17
I love my asn she really healthy but I want to know if it is a good idea to feed her plants like up above. Has any one tried to and does the turtle like it. Also if so which plant would be best for the turtle? Thank you!

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  • jasmine hopkins - 2011-09-05
    Hi I am jasmie hopkins and I have an asn also, and I've also went through the same thing and I finally found out that the plants to give it is either carrot shavings or lettuice! I hope it works it works for me! :)
  • Jen - 2012-09-16
    Yes, these two breeds of turtles can be in the same environment.
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Jeni - 2012-04-17
I would like to know how to detemine the sex of my turtle? It is an African side neck.

To Answer the questions about turtles not eating it could be a variety of things the water is to acidic or cold? Maybe s/he don't like the type of food you are feeding it.

Last and this is a biggy..all turtles seem to go into periods of hybernation but I know that when I did not have a UV light/lamp on the take my poor turtles seemed overly sleepy all the time! I had the wrong type of light in the tank...I was just using regular bulbs not UV. That was part of my issues and my turtle could have had malabsorption issues due to his shell de-calcifying. SO UV light good regular light not so much. Lesson learned...now I just need to know if my turtle is a she or a he?

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  • Charlie Roche - 2012-04-17
    I have to be honest and tell you I have never tried to determine the sex of a turtle - just have never done it. So I tried looking it up and I found what I thought made the most sense to me. Many articles just said based on whatever type of turtle or had long ads --- No fun. This article made some sense to me SEXING TURTLES
  • Carlos Mendez - 2012-05-02
    Well on Turtleforum.com it said that an African Side-Necked turtle sex depends on its tail. Larger one indicates that it is a male. Smaller/skinnier tail indicates it is a female.
  • veela - 2012-05-28
    Females have their vent placed closer to between the legs, while males, who also have a longer tail, have their vent opening almost at the tip of the tail. Males also have a concave plastron (the shell that covers the belly) while a female's is almost completely flat.
  • Anonymous - 2012-07-10
    The concave really gives it away. Males have that rounded underside while females do not.
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christian - 2011-07-08
I have a full grown african sideneck turtle and I caught a baby painted turtle. Will the african sideneck turtle attack it?

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-07-08
    That you would have to watch. The african sideneck can be agressivre on occasion as to why or for what I don't know. I wouldn't let them roam around together until you have had a chance to see how they interact with each other on neutral teritory. Place them a foot apart on the floor or yard and let them see each other, get to hang out together and just introduce them graduallylike that for a few weeks with you supervising. If they get along - great but if not, you will be right there to insure that nothing happens. If attacked the little guy will just pull into his shell so it should be fine but when it comes to feeding etc, the little guy (unless they get along) could wind up on the short end of the stick. Should be fine but watch them.
  • christian - 2011-07-08
    Thanks. I did it and they actually started like checking each other out but they haven't fought yet. They have been in the the same tank since 2:00 today and haven't really fought at all. The sideneck just rubbed its head againt the painted turtle.
  • Charlie Roche - 2011-07-08
    Sounds like your doing good with them. I would just put food in 2 differnt places. Think of them as two children.
  • Jen - 2012-09-16
    Yes, a turtles skin will shed...and their shells will grow as well...during this time. Hence, it is developing larger.
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