Utah, United States
Posted Jan 29, 2016
The markings of the painted turtle are the most striking thing about this species. Next, for me, is the amount of time these little guys spend being active.
My turtles were constantly on-the-move -- swimming around, hunting, and crawling up the side of the aquarium. They were a joy to watch and fairly easy to clean up after. The hard part, though, was handling, feeding, and catching them once you're done cleaning up their aquarium.
Because they were so active, handling my turtles was somewhat of a task. They were constantly moving their legs and bobbing their heads from side to side, taking in their surroundings. If you put them down to clean out the cage, they'd scuttle across the ground to the nearest bush or rocky enclave to hide and watch their surroundings. They tend to hiss when startled, but have never bitten me.
The ultimate end to both of my turtles was increasingly-picky eating habits. At first, I could feed them both worms; then, they had to have mealworms; then, it was crickets. At the end, they were both only accepting lettuce, which is hardly enough for turtles to subsist on. After lettuce stopped working, I decided the easiest thing to do would be to let both of them go in a nearby marshland to hunt on their own.
My one piece of advice to future owners: be prepared for the struggle that comes with finding a diet the turtles deem suitable to their needs.