I have a 20 year old mud turtle It seems that his peak has over grown to a point that it is hard for him to pick up

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Customer: I have a 20 year old mud turtle It seems that his peak has over grown to a point that it is hard for him to pick up worms that he really loves. I put a cuttle bone in his tank but he is not interested Renee
Answered by Anna in 10 mins 12 years ago
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Anna
30+ years of experience
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17,040 satisfied customers

Specialities include: Reptile Veterinary, Herp Veterinary, Exotic Animal Medicine, Amphibian Veterinary

Hello,

Some additional information will help me to answer your question.

What brand and size of UVB light do you have? Is it a coil or straight tube? How old is the bulb?

What temperature do you maintain under the basking light and in the water?

What do you feed? Any supplements?

Thank you.

Anna



Customer

It Is about 85 degrees and it is a tube light. It is 20 inches long I give a powder caliium

 

 

 

 

The tank is about 85 with a 20 inch tube light. He eats veggies, fruits, super worms, and earth worms. I sprinkle a calium powder on his veggies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you. I'm concerned about your light. This could be an important factor in the problem. Can you tell me any more about it? Does it have a brand name anywhere on it? Does it show an output of UVB light on it? This won't be watts, but a number like 10.0 or 5.0. How old is it?

I'm sorry for so many questions, but this really is important.

Anna
Customer

Sun Glo 5.0 and it is about 8 month old. I do not think it is a uvb..

 

Thank you - that's what I needed. an overgrown beak is often a sign of Metabolic Bone disease (MBD). It can be the result of a lack of UVB light or of calcium. you're supplementing calcium, but your light is inadequate. A 5.0 doesn't put out enough UVB to do any good at all. MBD usually results when the turtle is not given a UVB light. It's extremely important that you buy a light that produces adequate UVB rays. A Reptisun 10.0 is a good brand that does. If you choose another brand be absolutely certain it provides UVB rays. Don't take the word of pet store personnel, but read it for yourself. Full-spectrum, DayGlo, daylight, UV, or UVA are not the same thing. Vitamin supplements are not a good replacement for the proper lighting. A light as weak as your present one only lasts about 3 months. More powerful UVB bulbs, such as the one i recommended, must be replaced every six months as they lose their effectiveness after that, even though they may still look fine. Light that comes through a window isn't sufficient because the glass filters out most of the rays turtles need to stay healthy.

I'm concerned that your turtle may have other symptoms of MBD. because so much of the body is inside the shell, it can be hard to tell. There are also other possible causes of an overgrown beak, including thyroid disorders. You'll also need to have a vet trim the beak. For all of these reasons, it would be best to make an appointment with a reptile vet. If you'll give me your zip code if you live in the USA, or your country if you don't, I can find a vet for you.

You do also need to continue the calcium and the cuttlebone and buy a new UVB light. The following two sites contain interesting information on mud turtles. The first one is academic, but is well worth reading. The second one gives general care tips.

http://www.unc.edu/~dtkirkpa/stuff/mud2.html


http://www.chelonia.org/Articles/kinosternidaecare.htm

If you have further questions, or want help locating a vet, just let me know by clicking on REPLY.

Anna
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