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Anna, Reptile Expert, Biologist
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 11507
Experience:  Have owned turtles, snakes, amphibians, and lizards. Study and provide habitat for wild herps.
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I have 2 red eared sliders and last week I found a broken

Customer Question

Customer: ***** *****, I have 2 red eared sliders and last week I found a broken egg in their aquarium while cleaning it and tonight while cleaning it I found another one. What do I do with the egg and is there going to be more eggs.
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: I know nothing about turtles and do not know what is required for them at this point. Not even sure which turtle is the female. Do I keep the egg out of the aquarium?
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Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Reptile
Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome. Thank you for requesting me. I want to let you know I've seen your question and will post your answer as soon as I have it put together and typed up. That should be within 30 minutes. You'll receive an email when I post. I appreciate your patience.

Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for waiting. The eggs in the aquarium should be thrown out. Even if they were fertile, the embryos drown in water. Turtle eggs must be buried in soil. You may not even have a male turtle. Females lay infertile eggs even when no male is present.

The biggest concern at this point is the female's health. She most likely has more eggs. You'll need to provide her with a nesting site. For a slider, that would be a 50/50 mix of sand and organic compost, about 12 inches deep. The bigger the area you can give her, the better. You may have to move her to a preformed pond or a child's wading pool to make room for everything she needs. Be sure that you continue to provide UVB light and a basking light no matter where you put her. This site has very detailed instructions for making nesting sites, including photos:

Since you don't know which turtle is the female, you'll need to place both of them in the nest site.

I'll explain why I'm concerned about the female. Turtles will retain eggs as long as possible while they seek an appropriate nesting site. This retention can cause infection, organ damage, and even death. Symptoms of a problem may include not laying eggs, laying only a few eggs, laying eggs in water, lethargy, pacing, lack of appetite, prolapse, digging motions, and kicking of the back legs.If these behaviors continue after you provide a nest, and she doesn't lay any eggs, you'll need to consult a reptile vet. Here, you can read more about egg-laying and egg retention:

If you need a vet, this link will take you to a directory:

If you want to try to hatch the eggs, you can carefully remove them from the soil without turning or rotating them, and incubate them according to the directions on the site above, or you can leave them where the mother laid them. If the temperature and humidity is appropriate, they will hatch there, too.

This is a serious situation, so be sure to build a nesting site as soon as possible. If you have further questions, just let me know by clicking on REPLY.


My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back, I am happy to address follow-up questions. Please remember to rate my service only after you have all the information you need. Thank you!

Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

Hello again,

How are things going? Were you able to get a nest site set up?