Top Tips For Feeding & Caring For Baby River Cooter Turtles

top Tips For Feeding Caring For Baby River Cooter Turtles

River cooters are also known as Pseudemys concinna, are a very popular species of turtles because they are sold quite often. You can find them in almost all pet stores, their demand is increasing day by day due to their pretty features and easy-to-handle nature. The baby river cooter originates from the central and eastern United States.

The river cooter is mostly bought as juveniles, they are freshwater species, meaning that they survive in water. The baby river cooters are a lot easier to handle, since they have a petite size when young. As the river cooters grow, they can transform into humongous sizes. 

Caring for a baby river cooter is not difficult at all, there are certain things that you can easily master to take care of these adorable babies.

The diet of river cooters is also very simple, they are primarily herbivores. but they are also known as omnivores because they do eat meat at young stages of their life.

Here we provide you with amazing tips and tricks for caring for and feeding your baby River cooter.

Tips for feeding your baby River cooter.

  • In addition to pellets, you have to offer a range of fruits and vegetables. Foods that are good for baby turtles include lettuce, kale, carrots, melon, and strawberries. Duckweed, water lettuce, and water hyacinth are a few examples of aquatic plants that your turtle could consume regularly, they contain all vital nutrients that help your tiny baby cooter grow properly. Carrots have vitamin A and vitamin K in them, these have proven to help in the bone growth of the turtles.
  • The balanced diet of the baby river cooter is 

 80% pellets, 10% fruits and vegetables, 10% meat / dried insects. If you can maintain this diet for your baby river cooter  turtle will surely grow well.

  • As baby river cooters eat meat as well so Mealworms, earthworms, crayfish, minnows, snails, slugs, and wax worms are all suitable food for it.

 Pet stores that offer turtles and other reptiles may sell these.

 Never go to a tackle shop or try to find worms on your own you must do roer research before you go hunting food for your baby river cooter. Make sure the worms are suitable for turtle eating

You can also feed them with the meat of small fish, snails are a vital part of their diet, the snails contain vitamin A and E, vitamin E protects the turtle again muscle weakness and strength. 

  •  Your baby river cooter turtle lives in freshwater, so have water in the tank where you feed it ,since freshwater turtles love to be submerged in water while they eat. For young turtles to avoid drowning, the water should be quite shallow. Limit the depth to two inches or less.
  • Give your turtle a well-set pond and provide it with the plants and an environment that it would have in its natural enclosure, such as some pebbles aquatic plants, etc, this promotes their eating habits and makes them comfortable. The more comfortable you make the turtles’ environment, the better its growth and health, just like us humans.
  • River cooter hatchlings need to be fed daily. They are normally most active in the afternoons and mornings, therefore those are the best times to feed them since they will be most likely to consume the food. Also, keep in mind that you must not overfeed your baby river cooter the amount of food he must be consuming is the size of his head without the neck, the baby river cooter will automatically stop eating when it feels full, so do not force it to eat something that it doesn’t want to.
  • When first introduced to a tank, young turtles might occasionally be reluctant to eat. This might be due to the changing environment, or if their enclosure is cold, Although this is typical, it has to be fixed.

 There are numerous ways to handle this kind of circumstance.

Movement may occasionally promote eating.

 Live crickets or mealworms may pique your baby turtles’ interest if they are uninterested in pellets.

Check the temperature of the water. If the water is excessively chilly or warm, turtles will occasionally skip meals. The ideal water temperature varies according to the breed, but is typically 84 degrees Fahrenheit is the best temperature for baby river cooters.

  • The baby river cooter won’t always remain a baby, so if you see them not eating properly after two years of life, it might be a sign that you need to change their diet to something with more greens.
  • Any vegetables you give your turtle should be fresh. Before feeding your turtle, wash the turtle as well. Keep in mind that any germs or chemicals that are dangerous to people might also be dangerous to your turtle. Any product you give your turtle should be prepared the same way you would for yourself. Cleaning the water before you feed your baby River cooter is a good idea, since filthy water may lead to a lot of health issues. River cooters also excrete waste in the water that they consume and swim in.
  • Consult your veterinarian about vitamin supplements to make sure your turtle is getting the nutrition it needs because vitamin shortages are to blame for many turtle health issues. For turtles, calcium is a very crucial nutrient. A pet store will likely sell calcium supplements for turtles. Two or three times each week, sprinkle calcium over the diet. These vitamins are also available in liquid form. If you wish to avoid supplements, feed your infant river cooters plants that are high in calcium.
  • Avoid manually feeding your turtle. If you do, it may begin to link food with your hands and the baby turtle may start to bite. Special care must be given while handling young turtles in terms of meal preparation.

Given that a young turtle’s mouth is smaller and you don’t want it to choke, turtle pellets should be divided into four pieces.

To avoid choking, any fruit larger than a blueberry should be mashed or sliced into smaller pieces.

To ensure that baby turtles receive appropriate nourishment, vitamin and calcium supplements are occasionally advised. Approximately three times a week should pass if you choose to give your turtle vitamins.

Tips for caring for your baby River cooter.

  • Move the baby River cooter to another tank or container before cleaning the enclosure.

Remove all of the substrates, plants, decorations, and food from the enclosure.

Use warm water and bleach in the following ratio to clean the enclosure’s bottom and walls: 1 gallon of water and 1/2 cup of bleach.

After about 10 minutes, rinse the cleaning solution out of the cage. Allow the enclosure to dry naturally.

Run tap water over all ornaments and pebbles to clean them, then let them air dry.

Refill the enclosure with a new substrate when the enclosure and decorations have dried. Reintroduce the rocks and ornaments into the enclosure. Bring the river cooters back to the pen.

  • The baby river cooters need to be handled with care and gentleness, their shell is very delicate, so if you want to hold them then hold them with your index and thumb, the thumb should be facing down towards the belly of the turtle and index on the top shell, this avoids the turtle from slipping out of your hand. if the turtle falls on the floor it might break its shell, so try not to handle it that often.
  • While the temperature at the basking spot should be adjusted to between 85 and 90°F, the water temperature in the river cooter’s cage should be set at about 75°F. To guarantee that basking temperatures are satisfied, use heat lights at the location.

Warmer temperatures are required while caring for infant river cooters. At 80 °F (27 °C), baby river rooters flourish. Place heating pads below the tank to maintain this temperature. Make sure to provide a basking spot for your baby river cooter, as this is very crucial for them.

  • If you ever notice some sort of cracked shell or any other scratches on the shell, make sure to apply an ointment on it after cleaning it with an antiseptic, and if you are new to handling turtles, take it to a vet so that it can be treated properly.
  • Vitamin D3, which is necessary for the body’s calcium, is produced in large part by UVB rays. Baby river cooter turtles wouldn’t be able to obtain the right amount of calcium without UVB radiation, which can result in poor bone development, metabolic bone disease, softshell, shell rot, and many other undesirable conditions.

Since turtles are unable to manufacture their body heat, the heat lamp gives the heat that they sorely require, so make sure to buy a good UVB lam for your baby cooter.

  • Getting a suitable tank is the first thing you need to do before getting a baby river cooter. Broadly speaking, you need at least 10 gallons of water in your tank for every inch of your turtle’s shell.

A 20-gallon tank should be plenty for now, as the majority of newborn turtles are no more than 2 inches. However, juvenile turtles may grow pretty quickly, so if possible, obtain a larger tank right away to avoid having to buy a new one later.

  • If your turtle appears unwell, there is just one thing you should do: take it to the doctor. Don’t explore online for remedies or treatments; turtles are difficult to diagnose, and not all internet advice is sound.

You must bear in mind that any turtle will require some time to adjust to its new habitat. During this period, your turtle may display peculiar behavior, leading you to believe that it is unwell. My recommendation is to visit the vet as soon as you obtain your turtle to avoid any misunderstandings.

  • Sand or stones that are too big for river cooter turtles to eat make the finest substrate.

The simplest substrates to maintain are those made of rocks, but it’s important to make sure that no pieces are too small for river cooters to eat.

The river cooter’s native habitat is most closely modeled by sandy surfaces. Sand needs to be replaced often to keep the cage clean because it becomes dirty more quickly than rocky substrates.

The environment that you provide your baby river cooter really matters because the closer the environment to their natural habitat the better for the baby turtles’ growth, they grow better when they feel at home in their enclosures.

  • The fact that turtles become antagonistic against one another as they mature is another factor. When they are infants, they can depart happily together, but as they become older, this will alter, necessitating greater distance so they are not always interacting.  We recommend to separate two turtles because they are so hostile to one another. However, not all turtles will develop this level of aggression; this will vary on their species and personalities, so you can keep two or more baby river cooters together in a tank but separate them as they grow.
  • Other than that,  baby river cooters do not require a lot of grooming, you also do not need to give them baths or clean their shells, they remain in the waters, so they are clean. Do not brush their shell whatsoever as this may harm them.


In this article we resent to you the top ten things that you must know before getting a  baby River cooter as a pet, there are certain tips and tricks which may help you in feeding and caring for your baby river cooter. The baby river cooter proves to be great pet, as they are very easy to feed and take care of, the main thing that you must take care of is their water. Baby river cooters are bought more often as compared to the adult ones because of their adorable features and humble personalities. Be humble with your baby river cooters, they are very loving creatures when treated with care and affection.


What type of animal is the baby river cooter?

The baby river cooters are the newborn hatchling of the river cooters, and they belong to the Emydidae family of animals.

What’s the name of baby river Cooter?

There is no specific name for the baby river cooters, they are usually called juveniles, but you may also call the baby river cooters themselves.

Are baby river cooters also diurnals?

Yes, just like adult river cooters, the baby river cooters are also diurnal, they sleep during the night and are active during the day, and they also bask in the sun.

Are baby river cooter aggressive?

No, baby river cooters are not aggressive because they adapt to the friendly nature of pets, unlike the wild ones.

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