Fresh-water turtles such as the red-eared turtle love water. You need to make sure that the water provided for your turtle must be at least 1.5 to 2 times your turtle’s total length. There should also be extra inches of air space between the surface of the water to the top edge of the tank to prevent your turtle from climbing off its enclosure and escaping. The tank length should be at least 4-5 times its carapace length (CL). The front-to-back width should be at least 2-3 times its CL. You need to make sure that you will be providing your pet with enough space where it can go from water to land. Because of this, you may need an enclosure larger than a 10-20 gallon (38-76 liter) tank even for the smallest turtle (about 4 inches).
An appropriate water filtering system is crucial to keep the water inside your pet’s tank fairly fresh between weekly changes. You will need to replace the water with warm water. You will also need an automated siphon for partial changes of water between the overall heavy-duty changes and cleaning.
Here are some options that you may consider when buying a best filter for red eared slider tank:
- Tetra 25905 Decorative Reptile Filter for Aquariums up to 55 Gallons. This innovative technology and design combine a filtration system and a decoration for your pet’s enclosure. This will add as a beautiful waterfall and a basking area for your turtle. It comes with an integrated three-stage Whisper filtration, which uses easily replaceable Bio Bags, and keeps water inside the tank clear and odor-free.
- JackSuper Aquarium Waterfall Reptiles Turtle Internal Filter. This low water filter can be used as a beautiful waterfall in any aquarium up to 28 gallons. Its dense dual-sided mesh catches debris and waste. It is also filled with ultra-activated carbon which absorbs odors and discoloration in the water to keep it clean and clear.
- Zoo Med 511 Turtle Clean Canister Filter. This can be used as an external canister filter for turtle tanks up to 60 gallons. It comes with an easy-to-open filter head. This filter is a space-saving device that comes with calibrated anti-vibration bushings.
- Zoo Med Turtle Clean 15 External Canister Filter. This small, convenient filter fits outside the tank of your turtle. The canister contains biological, chemical, and mechanical filtration that keep tanks, vivariums, box turtle pools, and aquariums up to 15 gallons clean. It comes with a clear viewing case that allows one to see when the filter media already needs to be replaced. It also comes with a 1-year warranty.
- Zoo Med Turtle Clean 318 Submersible Filter. This submersible filter can be used for aquatic turtle tanks (up to 30 gallons) or in filtering box turtle ponds” as well as aquatic amphibian tanks. It comes with dual intake ports that will prevent clogging as well as with activated carbon and biological filter sponges.
Take note that the appropriate water temperature in your pet’s tank should be maintained between 75-86 degrees F (23.8-30 C). A temperature that is just too cold for your turtle will keep it from eating. If it’s too hot, then you might just get your turtle cooked. To help you monitor regularly the temperature in the enclosure, you will need to have a good quality aquarium thermometer.
Area HeatingIf your turtle’s area temperature is kept at over 75 F (23.8 C), then you will only need to heat up a basking area, rather than heating up the room, too. You may use an incandescent light or spotlight to allow the area near the light source to reach 85-88 F (29.4-31 C).
Make sure that the lighting fixtures are securely attached and that there is absolutely no way for the turtle to come into direct contact with the bulb. The light will also heat up the water to a certain degree so you have to make sure to monitor the water temperature regularly as well.
Juvenile sliders, as well as any sick turtle, has to be kept warmer (temperatures between 82-85 F) than the average healthy adult. Low temperatures that are between 65-72 F or 18.3-22.2 C will cause your turtle to stop feeding and may trigger respiratory infections in your turtle.
You may also need to use a secondary source of heat to provide additional warmth to your pet in addition to the basking light already installed. Ceramic heat elements (CHE) may be screwed into regular incandescent sockets and may be used for this purpose. They come in a variety of watts and also last for some time. Install CHEs into porcelain light sockets as these heat sources can easily melt plastic sockets.