This page last edited on

01 August, 2008



For more information on Turtle Care and vitally important rescue work, please visit Turtle Rescue USA



1 Malayan box turtle
1 Yellow belly slider
2 Central American wood turtles
2 Florida box turtles
9 Red ear sliders

  I have the Turtle Crossing sign posted on my gate by the front door just in case someone doesn't notice the turtles when they walk up the driveway. There are five species of turtles  - 15 total - that live here at Dianes Zoo. All but the two Florida box turtles and the two Central American wood turtles live in the front pond.  The Florida boxes and wood turtles live in the tortoise pen on the side of the house because they would not do well in the large, deep pond. I also don't want them to live in the front yard because it is too large to be able find them, I don't want anyone to steal them and if they fell in the pond they might drown. They are not true pond turtles. Please visit their respective pages from the links on the left to learn more about how I care for them. This website is basically to share with all of you my wonderful reptiles and other animals here at Dianes Zoo. What I share with you doesn't mean it is right or that there are not other ways of doing things. I am still learning and have made mistakes. Please keep this in mind as you read and view pictures and video on this website. I am always open to comments and suggestions. The information contained on this page covers all the pond turtles:  Malayan box turtle, red ear sliders and yellow belly slider.  They are all living in the same pond and I feed them all the same foods.

  I have nine red ear sliders, one Malayan box turtle and one yellow belly slider in the front pond.  Each species has their own page which can be accessed at the links to the left. I started out with red ear sliders that my friend Erich gave me. Over the years people gave me more when they saw my outdoor pond.  I adopted the Malayan box turtle from the the Wildlife Care Center in Fort Lauderdale. Too often people get these really adorable red ear slider hatchlings for a few dollars a piece at flea markets, swap shops or reptile stores and have NO clue as to how big they get and how dirty they make the water in a small aquarium and how much work is involved in their care in an indoor setting. I have gotten five red sliders because of this. I cannot stress enough that red ear sliders NEED an outdoor pond!!!  My turtles live in a large pond with a lot of goldfish and rosy red minnows. There are also 3 large plecostomus.  My experience is only with raising turtles is in an outdoor setting either in the pond or in the tortoise pen. I have not raised indoor turtles in a tank so what I share with you on this page and on this website is strictly limited to my outdoor experience. I have raised hatchlings indoors though but with small water dishes, not tanks. However, I have seen enough turtles in tanks and have heard enough stories about the nightmare it is that I know it is not a desirable set up. Please click on the pond link in the picture menu on the top to learn more about the ponds and the fish.

  IMPORTANT:  It is very important before getting any turtles to make sure that you have a local veterinarian who will care for it. Most vets do not see reptiles of any sort, let alone turtles. Turtles do require care when sick so please keep that in mind. Turtles can also be hard to treat, especially tortoises, in my experience. If a turtle gets chewed on by an animal it is going to take a lot of work, time and expense on your part to treat it.  Turtles also get shell rot, among other infections, that must be treated by an experienced vet who specializes in their care.  Please do research on local vets before you obtain turtles, or any exotic animal.  I am lucky that I have an experienced vet near me and I have my friend Erich who is as knowledgeable as the vet on reptile care.

  IMPORTANT:  If you are interested in acquiring any type of turtle PLEASE rescue some from a local reptile rescue group rather than buy them from a swap shop, pet store or  reptile shop. Local reptile rescue groups place turtles and tortoises in good homes. Many times they are fostered until homes can be found, causing a lot of work for the small amount of dedicated people who care for them. Alleviate their burden and help the animals out by adopting them instead of buying them from another source. Local reptile groups can be found easily on the internet by doing a search.  Also, do research on the type of turtle you want to get BEFORE YOU GET IT! The main reasons why turtles end up being dumped are because people grow tired of taking care of them and the animals have grown too large for the owner to properly take care of them. It is always better for the turtle to live outside if you live in a warm climate. Even if you have cold winters, the animals can live outside in the warmer months. If you house a turtle indoors you MUST have a large enough tank for it and be prepared to spend the money on a PROPER set up!!!!!!!!!!!! You would be far better off to put in an outdoor pond for your turtles. Outdoor ponds do not need to be as large as mine. A 300 gallon pond is fine for a few turtles. You can buy pre-made ponds instead of using pond liner which can be easier to install.  TURTLES CAN LIVE A VERY LONG TIME SO BE PREPARED FOR THAT COMMITMENT FOR SOME SPECIES!!!!!!!!!!! If you are NOT prepared to do all of this than DO NOT GET A TURTLE!!!!!!!  ALMOST ALL of the tortoises and turtles that I adopted had BAD SHELLS because their previous owners did NOT know how to properly feed them. They also did not know how to properly house them and their requirement for UV ray lights!!!!! The animal is the one that suffered and it showed by the shape of their shell!!! It is virtually impossible to reverse the damage done to the shell once you begin to properly take care of it.

In February 2007 I had to bring the yellow and red foot tortoises in the house due to cold weather. It was down into the low 40's at night which is too cold for these tropical tortoises. I also took in the Malayan box turtle, the wood turtles and the African spur thigh tortoise. They were housed in the large cage seen to the right. Needless to say none of them were happy about it but they survived the 6 days inside and were better off for it!  Miss Ava the yellow foot is in the front part of the cage.

  I hope that you enjoy the pages for each of the turtles and that my housing, feeding and care pages are helpful to you.  There are plenty of pictures and video for each species on their respective pages.



These are pictures of the lattice fence that encloses the front yard


Driveway view

Here you can see the lattice fence with the pretty flowering vines along side of the driveway.


Here are pictures of the inside of the yard as well as the turtles laying out



The bridge

Yes, you can actually walk on the bridge!

Turtles Page | Turtle Housing | Turtle Feeding | Turtle Care | Central American Woods

Florida Boxes | Malayan Box | Red Ear Sliders | Yellow Belly Sliders | Worms

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DISCLAIMER:  This website was set up to SHARE my OWN experience with my reptiles, guinea pigs, ponds/fish, gardens and local wildlife and to post pictures and video of them. It was NOT SET UP to offer my opinion or expertise on ANY QUESTION that I am asked and what I post on this website should not be taken as "EXPERT ADVISE" or how to take care of reptiles, guinea pigs, ponds/fish, gardens or local wildlife. I AM NOT A REPTILE RESCUE GROUP, GUINEA PIG RESCUE GROUP, VETERINARIAN, REPTILE EXPERT, GUINEA PIG EXPERT, PONDS/FISH EXPERT, GARDEN EXPERT OR WILDLIFE REHABILITATOR! I have limited experience with reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish and gardens, therefore, I am NOT QUALIFIED to give out advise or answer questions and you, as a visitor to this website, should not take anything on this website as expert advise or accurate information.  I present this website for fun and fun only - NOT as a reference website to instruct anyone on how to properly take care of reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish or gardens.  I share how I DO THINGS for my reptiles, guinea pigs, local wildlife, ponds/fish and gardens and this is not intended for others to take as expert advise or to mimic. Furthermore, my political views are my own and not intended to offend, annoy, hurt or demean any person, entity or organization. I express my views as an American who has the right to free speech under the Constitution of the United States of America. Please feel free to set up your own website and express your views, post your pictures and video and share with the rest of us in cyberspace what your little corner of the world is like. Thank you very much for your kind understanding in appreciating the value and contents of this website.


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