Sometimes, my turtles are not active at all. They appear to be floating on the surface, completely motionless. I generally change water in that case.

However, I also think that not giving them proper ventilation with fresh air and sunlight could also be making them inactive. I am not sure; is it really an issue? If yes, I will have all of them to bask in shaded light near window every day. If no, how should I handle this situation?

Edit: Added more info.

  1. Light source in aquarium - CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) 8 watts, only one lightbulb.
  2. Aquarium size is 24 x 36 x 24.5. There is gravel at the bottom of aquarium and some plastic flowers for visual aesthetics. The turtles like to sit on them as well. I don't know how they do, but they can spend hours sitting on them.
  3. Filter - two submersible filters. They generally like to sit on top of the filter :). Maybe they want to get close to the CFL attached on top of aquarium. Filters looks like this:

enter image description here

  1. One air bubbler - with air stone stripped, so that mosquitoes can't sit on surface and lay eggs.

  2. What kind of turtles they are - I don't know, but you can see pictures in my other question here: Red flesh coming out my turtle's tail

  • 2
    Does your turtle-aquarium not have a dedicated heat-lamp? Your turtles need UVB-light! The question sounds like you don't have any UVB-light-source. Could you describe your aquarium in more detail? It sounds like there may be more off than just light-exposure.
    – Layna
    Commented Aug 31, 2017 at 7:25
  • We need more info, what kind of turtles? what is your setup? what kind of water filters do you use? what's the water temperature? What kind of lighting do you have? Etc. Commented Aug 31, 2017 at 10:16
  • 1
    in general turtles need lighting simmilar to sunlight so they atleast have an oportunity too bask in the(sun) when they want and yes every day if they want(be very careful so the temperature dont get too hot)some more information is needed to give a good answer(what have you done to fulfill your turtles need and what needs to be done). Commented Aug 31, 2017 at 13:53
  • Can you tell what kind of turtles they are? Commented Feb 28, 2018 at 10:02
  • I don't know their kind. Please help me to find out. I have uploaded pics here pets.stackexchange.com/questions/9295/…
    – paul
    Commented Feb 28, 2018 at 10:46

1 Answer 1


Ok, I will leave the filter- and space-questions to others (I am not too good at those when it comes to turtles), but pointers about the light and the sitting on the flowers:

About the light: Turtles do absolutely require UVB-light for their organism to work properly. That means sunlight, or a dedicated basking-lamp. Any bigger pet-store should have them. Make sure you hang it at an appropriate height, so it doesn't get too warm.

About the turtles sitting on the flowers and filter: Turtles need to rest occasionally. In the wilderness, they will be on branches, rocks and similar that rise out of the water. You need to provide these resting-places for them. Turtles (at least the ones you can keep in an aquarium) are not permanent swimmers!

That's the general advice for all aquarium-sized turtles I am aware of at least. To identify the species you have, please take some photos form above, side, and front of your turtle :).

  • 2
    it is best if the tank is fairly long so you can make a type of beach at one end so the turtle are able to rest on compleately dry ground and you have to put a full spectum light above this end(full spectrum is every wave length fro ir to uvb)you might have to use two light sources to do this. Commented Dec 30, 2017 at 18:40

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