Remember My Turtle?

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Whoever still thinks that turtles are slow should try keeping one. Don't be fooled by their glazed lazy-eye look, they are pretty smart and they sure can run!

As you may probably noticed, I've got a pet turtle. His name's Merlin and he currently resides in a ceramic basin outside the house but under a porch.

Before Merlin, we had a turtle called 'Baby' but he went missing after his basin got filled up with water from the rain. I imagined his escape a triumphant one but he could be roaming the drains cursing his fate.

Merlin, my red-eared slider is approximately 8 years old this year. When I was in college (the second time around that is), he was my roommate. A stinky one that needed daily showers but ended up getting weekly ones. I had a friend who would actually scrub his shell with her own shampoo! No wonder he'd always looked shinier when she gave her a bath as compared to when I gave the reptilian some gentle cleaning.


Anyway, let me give you an update on how Merlin is doing presently. His shell diameter is about the size of my palm. Your average adult palm, that is. I think. Forgive my utter vagueness, I'm not about to get a ruler to measure the slimy one. He likes to take a peep at human beings or the feline pets whenever the mood comes and especially when he is starving.


Whenever it's his food time and I'm shaking the can of turtle pellets over his head, he will start waving his legs around like he's summoning for the food to fall into the water. He loves munching on his green turtle pellets. And if you're sneaking around trying to catch a glance of what he's up to, he will know that you're there and will not be shy to eyeball you back. It's pretty cute.

Oh and he hates sudden inconsiderate movements and anything loud. Mom's been creative lately that she's been using Merlin's murky poopy water as a nourishment for the garden soil. And I've noticed that the plants are getting pretty greener but I'm not sure what the verdict is on turtle manure as plant fertilizer.

So, whenever she scoops the water out of the basin, she tends to upset my little turtle. When he gets scared, he will start scrambling around and that's just not fun to watch. He does hiss with his mouth open whenever he's upset. He can bite but I've never been bitten by him yet.

He knows when I'm carrying him as he will pull his legs into the shell instead of fighting me off with his claws. And to make sure that I don't traumatize my sensitive turtle, I make sure to move him extra slowly while supporting the shell below.

His nails are longer than the cat's:


He's quite a fatty one too but I've yet to capture a photo of his posterior. He likes to keep his tail tucked to the right or left side and he's skin is soft and cold to the touch. It's like touching a frog I guess.

Here's a video of Merlin and his feline friends. Please ignore my sister's weird-looking hand and shaky camera work.



What do you think of turtles? Do you own one? Can your turtle speak? Is your turtle making you go mad? Share your thoughts below as I'd love to know more about these mysterious reptiles.

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shanaz@RS | 3:33 AM | Labels:

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