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» September 2017

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  1. #1
    BPnet Veteran Jay_Bunny's Avatar
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    Alligator Snapper Questions

    I have an alligator snapper that is roughly a year and a half old. He weighs around 120g. Where I was living before, the room temp was pretty warm and he was kept with another alligator snapper. I did not set up a basking light as the temp in the room was usually around 75 and I've read conflicting things about them needing one. Where I live now, the room temp stays around 68-70 and he seems like he doesn't want to eat much. When I first moved here in mid-November, I got him some goldfish just to see if he'd eat. He ate a few but has left the rest. I've tried pellets and shrimp (things he has eaten before), and dried shrimp/krill.

    He hasn't been losing weight since November. He has UVB light and lives in a 50g rubbermaid tub. I only keep about 10g of water in it to keep it from bowing, but I have plans to move him to a 100g+ tub this spring. But I'm wondering if the lowered temps have put him in a bit of a brumation. With my next paycheck I was thinking of getting a heater for the water to bring it up to 78. I did put some large tadpoles (like bullfrog tadpoles) in the water just to see if he'd eat them and I checked today and they were gone, so I"m assuming he ate them. He has live plants in the tub and driftwood. So he has places to hide and get out of the water.

    Note: Yes I am aware these are not beginner turtles. Yes I am aware he will get big and probably aggressive. Yes I have taken this into consideration and I am choosing to keep him.
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  2. #2
    Registered User BPGator's Avatar
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    Re: Alligator Snapper Questions

    I probably can't answer it, but what's the question?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  3. #3
    BPnet Veteran Jay_Bunny's Avatar
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    Should I get the heater to boost his temps and see if that helps him eat, or at his age, is this a type of brumation due to the lowered temps and should I just leave him be? Sorry, its been a long day and I didn't form that thought completely before posting. He weighed 123g in November. He weighed 120g last week but it could have been water weight from taking him out of the water and not drying him off. I doubt 3g is much to worry about.

    I suppose I also meant to ask if there were other things I could try to feed him to give him a varied diet?
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  4. #4
    BPnet Veteran Jay_Bunny's Avatar
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    I can provide pictures of set up and turtle if that helps.
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  5. #5
    John1982's Avatar
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    Re: Alligator Snapper Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay_Bunny View Post
    Note: Yes I am aware these are not beginner turtles. Yes I am aware he will get big and probably aggressive. Yes I have taken this into consideration and I am choosing to keep him.
    They don't really get aggressive/defensive like the common snappers. Keep anything you fancy whole out of those gaping jaws when it gets large and you're fine. They're not beginner species mainly due to their large adult size(not a piece of cake to carry from A to B when needed) and habitat requirements. As for the water temps, I don't have much to suggest unfortunately. I had one when I was a kid that we kept outdoors in a large cattle trough but can't remember if it ate much during the "colder" months here in North Florida. I do occasionally find them in the Ichetucknee river which stays a constant 72F year round, if that's of any use to you. As for food, I remember always keeping live fish(shiners) in the trough setup - loved watching my pet rock lure those fish! When there were only a couple left, Dad would drive me to the bait shop to replenish their numbers. They'll eat pretty much anything they can catch though so don't be scared to try different things. Also, don't forget to offer some plant stuff too - water plants, fruits(pears, apples, etc) and veggies should be offered and uneaten parts removed a day or two later. Depending on your filtration strength, you may want to remove the same day even. Just keep throwing different food types in there, you might be surprised what your little one will eat! You don't need a land area if your water depths are proper. As long as there's a section where the turtle can snorkel the surface without having to swim, you're fine on depth. Typically, only females will leave the water to lay eggs. Lots of cover(sticks, logs, rocks) is great for their security and is basically a requirement. Good luck and I'd love to see pictures!

  6. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to John1982 For This Useful Post:

    Ba11er (02-02-2017),Jay_Bunny (02-03-2017)

  7. #6
    BPnet Veteran Jay_Bunny's Avatar
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    Sorry it's taken me so long to update.

    It must have been some type of brumation because Olaf is eating like a champ now. He won't eat the goldfish in his tub. I think they are either too quick or he's just too lazy. He's eating pellets regularly and I'm going to start offering veggies as well. I was thinking of offering fish (like salmon or tilapia) and shrimp on occasion. Should I cook these first or is it okay to give it to him raw?

    I'm going to try and keep track of his growth as well. I don't have length or width measurements but his weight is about 123g. I'll get some pictures taken soon and posted.
    Last edited by Jay_Bunny; 04-15-2017 at 12:20 PM.
    Under Construction.....

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  9. #7
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    Re: Alligator Snapper Questions

    Good to hear! I'd personally feed raw. Looking forward to pictures.

  10. #8
    BPnet Veteran Jay_Bunny's Avatar
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    Sorry for the delay of pictures and updates. Olaf is growing like a weed and finally showed some attitude today. I haven't handled him in a few weeks and when I took him out to weigh him, he tried to bite me. I think I need to start handling him more often. He now weighs 184g, so 6.5oz roughly.

    His current habitat. (in the middle of a clean)



    And here he is, in all his glory
    Under Construction.....

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  12. #9
    Registered User C.Marie's Avatar
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    You may want to try pinkies too I heard turtles like them too, good luck with your adorable little fella

  13. #10
    John1982's Avatar
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    Seems once again the ole common name might have thwarted me. Looks like you've got Chelydra while my advice was mainly for Macrochelys. Common snappers are stronger swimmers and frequent baskers. They also have a much faster strike/bite so you definitely want to watch your fingers, haha. Beautiful turtle you've got there regardless. Looking forward to seeing it in a few years when it's massive!

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