I have three red-eared sliders that I bought when they were itty-bitty babies. Now they are around 4 inches long and the acquarium is too small for them, and they need more space. I do not want to give them to a pet store, because most people end up killing their pets pretty quickly (especially turtles) and I would rather either let them go at the Everglades or around there (lots of water and critters and very unlikely that a human will catch them) or at any of several very large ponds (they are about four square blocks long & wide) which are inside the grounds of a couple of Universities that I am near, and also a local hospital has one.

All of these ponds have lots of small fish, and I have seen a large turtle and they do not have predators such as alligators. Also, people and kids are not allowed to fish the ponds or catch any critters.
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Umm .. why not just get a bigger aquarium???
When you bought them, you took on the responsability of these little critters for LIFE!! Releasing them ANYWHERE is never a good thing. How will they eat?? They are used to you feeding them. I also doubt they have ever hibernated in your tank at home. Add that they would have to deal with predators like cats. There are so many reasons.
My only other suggestion is to contact your local Herp Society. No doubt they have a rescue/adoption program in place. (Although probably overloaded with red eared sliders/iguanas/..etc.) You should have thought of this eventuality at time of purchase!! Sorry if I dont seem to have alot of pity for your plight but I do rescues and adoptions and I tire of hearing these same things ona regular basis.
"It got too big!!" ... "Too much work!!" ... "Too costly" "It's sick all the time" ... "I cant pick it up, too skitish" You really should have red up about them first!!
You owe it to the creatures you take under your care. They are not play things ... They DO grow up!
My suggestion ... simply go buy and larger tank!!
Treat the poor things with the respect they deserve and dont just toss them away because they got too big. Thier life has been in your hands since the day you bought them ... Value it!!

Rob
(ps. my 4 slider's shells got to be 6" long ... then add head/neck and tail)
"whattheheck" Thier life has been in your hands since the day you bought them ... Value it!!
If I did not value their lives they would not have lived this long. But the facts are that in a small tank they will not continue to grow, and according to your theory anyone who buys a turtle should expect them to grow to their largest size of 18-24 inches long, and everyone who buys a turtle should be able to afford their own private pond so the turtles can live their entire life in captivity. Basically, you just shot your mouth off with nothing constructive. Your argument is pretty weak, and if that is your attitude I doubt that you are rescuing pets for any reason other than to belittle, degrade, and browbeat the people who turn to you thinking that you are not some kind of ***.
I was not belittling you or trying to degrade you!! I was just stating the obvious!!
You are entitled to your opinion but . . . .
As I mentioned, I was sorry for not showing pity but you ARE getting rid of them because you feel they are too big!!

Did you research the pets before you bought???
If so, then you would have known the size they would be as adults!! If so, then you took this responsability with full knowledge!! If so, then you have made the choice to discard the pet with advance knowledge!!
I'm sorry but I greatly dislike when someone knows in advance that they have to get a larger enclosure but dont bother and then get rid of the pet because they didnt follow up on thier responsability.

Again ... not trying to be rude but:
How much research did you do before buying the turtles?? Red eared sliders are NOT going to attain a size of 18"-24". Red eared sliders average 5"-7" up to possible 11" Click this link to see for yourself:
http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/factsheets/reptiles/red eared slider/red earred slider.htm

I never said that a turtle buyer should buy a pond and such but I "DO" agree that I said they for them to spend thier entire life in captivity!!!
You are talking about a "captive-bred" animal here. Raised in captivity as well!!
When you buy a pet it "IS" for the span of thier "ENTIRE" life!! It is one thing for a zoo to captive breed an endangered species for release to the wild to repopulate. It is another thing entirely for a person who has a pet to kick it out of it's home and expect it to do well in the wild.
You say my arguement is "weak" but please explain what you mean!! You can feel free to read what other will post but you will see that none will agree that "releasing" then to forest or pond is a good idea!!

On the topic of shooting my mouth off with nothing constructive: Lets see ... I suggested getting a larger aquarium!! I would suggest at least 100-150gallon with an external canister filter. I also suggested getting ahold of your local Herp Society for thier rescue/adoption program. If you do not wish to continue caring for the turtles then let them find someone who is!!
I am sorry you feel that I was just putting you down but, as I stated, I hate hearing all the excuses. I wish people would just accept the responsability they took on or pass it on to someone who is willing. I didnt just say that either ... I offered suggestions on what to do and who to contact. I will admit I may have been a bit harsh but I care for these animals and how they are treated. But, please dont forget I tried to help and guide you in the right direction as well!!

I will end with this:
I apologise if I seemed to be putting you down. I will admit that I am not happy about you getting rid of these critters but it is, after all, your choice. I think you misread some of what I wrote or were too annoyed because I was trying to give you the 2 alternatives to releasing that came to mind (larger tank or herp society). I was also hoping you might see my point and get the larger tank. These are your pets. You have raised them from silver dollar size to 4". Dont give up on them now. "YOU" are all they know. And please do not just release them. Talk to the local Herp Society. I'm sure they will try to help
Rob
I don't think you belittled him or degraded him any more than the original message asked for! 8o)
I agree completly with you, always research a pet BEFORE getting it and if you can not be sure you will be able to take care of all its needs for its entire life then don't get it!

Releasing animals sounds a nice thing to do, but its not. Just imagine if you had been thrown out of your home at the age of three, would you be able to find food? would you be able to protect yourself? would you have been able to survive? of course not, because everything in your life was done by your parents and them providing everything is all you would know.

These animals can survive very well in the wild, but only if that is how they were brought up, putting sliders raised in captivity into the wild would just be a death sentence for them.

Dean
I was not belittling you or trying to degrade you!! I was just stating the obvious!! You are entitled to ... a size of 18"-24". Red eared sliders average 5"-7" up to possible 11" Click this link to see for yourself:

http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/factsheets/reptiles/red eared slider/red earred slider.htm
I have three red-eared sliders that I bought when they were itty-bitty babies. Now they are around 4 inches long ... have predators such as alligators. Also, people and kids are not allowed to fish the ponds or catch any critters.

Also your turtle may carry a disease not present in the wild turtles in your area. they would have no immunity to it.
I have three red-eared sliders that I bought when they were itty-bitty babies. Now they are around 4 inches long ... go at the Everglades or around there (lots of water and critters and very unlikely that a human will catch

There are many reasons not to release these turtles into the wild. Please take a look at these sites:
http://www.anapsid.org/release.html
http://www.mcmartinville.com/chris/reptiles/rph/rph faq.htm (sec. 6.5) http://www.smuggled.com/reprel6.htm
That's just a small sampling.
And what these sites don't mention is that many species of turtle are known to have a pretty well develop homing instinct. Research has been done showing that box turtles, snapping turtles and sea turtles all will seek to find their original home range once released into an unfamiliar territory. This often results in death from road mortalities and from starvation as they try to cross inhospitable terrain while searching for their home. I don't know of similar research on RES, but it is not unreasonable to assume that they will face the same dangers.
Please get a larger tank for your turtles and continue to provide care for them, or find another suitable home. Your local herp society is a good place to start if you choose the second option.
And one concrete example of why releasing your pets into the wild is a big no-no:
Desert toroise populations are on the decline here in the United States due to a disease called Mycoplasma that was introduced by captive animals that were
released into the wild. The disease can often be
asymptomatic in captive populations and when wild
populations are exposed they quickly succumb to the novel disease.
For more info:
http://www.deserttortoise.org/answeringquestions/chapter2-3.html

If you release these turtles into the wild you will most likely only be responsible for their almost
certain death, but you may also be responsible
for deaths of other turtles they come into contact with. You obviously care enough about these animals to have provided good care for them this long. Why change that now?
-Z
I have three red-eared sliders that I bought when they were itty-bitty babies. Now they are around 4 inches long ... have predators such as alligators. Also, people and kids are not allowed to fish the ponds or catch any critters.

Why not offer them to someone from this newsgroup? I'm sure someone would be willing to pay for shipping to safe your 3 sliders.

Shipping overnight shouldn't cost that much. Send me your zip code and we'll see if the package can be sent shipping C.O.D.

If someone is willing to send you money outright, then let them have it!

Don't release them into the wild. Too many problems to discuss in this forum, but it really isn't a good idea, neither for your sliders or other animals in that area!
Take Care and Good Luck!
Jim Smith

Blaming the gun for murder, is like blaming the car for hit and run!
"whattheheck" > Red eared sliders average 5"-7" up to possible 11">>

The reason that I said that your argument is weak is that I do not see the difference between keeping turtles in a place where they cannot grow to maximum length, and the harm of letting them loose. I think you guys cannot show me any hard evidence that says that captive turtles cannot survive in the wild. Dogs, Cats, Iguanas, Snakes, and many other critters that escape from their owners manage to survive. I think that letting these Sliders (native to most of the Eastern USA) loose where they can grow is their best fate. However, if you can tell me what size tank can support 11" turtles, I will consider it. I have a 20 gallon reptile tank right now. I imagine that each turtle would need their own 20 gallon tank in order to grow more?
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