Red-eared Slider, baby (Primary Turtles in Colour by Takara Tomy A.R.T.S.)

Review and images by JimoAi; edited by bmathison1972

Red-eared sliders (Trachemys scripta elegans) are a semi-aquatic species of turtles (in some places, they are also known as terrapins). They are found in most freshwater habitats of North America, including the southern United States and Northern Mexico. Juveniles are typically a green colour with a ‘red ear’ (hence the name) but as they get older, they turn to more of a brownish colour and the red ear fades. They get to a shell size of 15-30 cm; males are smaller compared to the females and have longer front claws for mating purposes while the females have longer hind claws for digging up nests. Like most turtles, they can retract their heads into their shells and they are omnivorous, feeding on both plants and animals. In turn, they are eaten by raccoons, alligators, large fish, and large birds, such as herons. They are adorable when young, and because of this, they are very popular pets. Unfortunately, many people do not know how big they get nor that they could live to 30 years on average, especially for females, which leads to a large number of these reptiles being neglected and some often gets dumped into nearby water bodies. Due to their lack of natural instincts, the captive turtles will usually end up dying and those that end up surviving will have a negative effect on the environment as they reproduce much faster and at a higher rate than most native turtles and they outcompete them for resources. Because if this, they have been listed as the top 100 worst Invasive Species, certainly a better invader than a certain little green invader (I’m looking at you, Invader Zim!). However, if raised well (given appropriate-sized enclosures), owners will be rewarded with their inquisitive nature, and they have also been known to recognize their owner’s face! So, if you’re planning to keeping red-eared sliders or any pets, DO YOUR RESEARCH BEFORE BUYING!

About the figure: the carapace has a length of 3 cm long, which puts this little red-eared slider at the 1:1 scale for a really young specimen.

The head is big in proportion to the shell, which is a bright green colour and there is a bright red ear, suggesting that this red eared slider is a young specimen. The skin is a darker green color with bright green streaks on the limbs and head, there are black and yellow markings on the carapace, and the claws are painted grey.

The bottom part of the shell (plastron), is a yellow colour with some green markings.

This figure, like the other Takara Tomy A.R.T.S. turtles, are re-releases of the Yujin line after Yujin was bought up by Takara Tomy. This gives collectors a second chance to obtain these little chelonians at a cheaper prices (I hope the Yujin Saltwater Fish in Colour Part One gets the same treatment ). I also do hope that companies would make an adult one in the similar size. Safari ltd has done one for their Incredible Creatures line and Furuta, Kaiyodo, and Ikimon has produced juvenile specimens, including albino variants. And since I don’t have any Red Eared Sliders and this is a life-size figure, why not compare it to the real deal? Here’s a 3 cm juvenile compared to a 17.5 cm 12-year-old adult male (really makes a good before and after photograph).

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Comments 6

  • Happy to see a RES review on here, I’ve had my RES for 29 years, definitely a commitment.

    • I always wanted a red-eared slider as a kid but my mom would never let me have one. My mom grew up in the 1940s and 1950s, when pet stores would sell baby RESs on a small plastic island habitat. Kids would occasionally swallow them and get Salmonella infections (I believe Arizona later made a law whereby pet stores could only sell turtles with a carapace length of >4.0 cm, but don’t hold me on that).
      My mom feared if I had a turtle, I’d get Salmonella. What is funny is that I WAS allowed to have snakes and lizards. I am lucky my mom didn’t know that all reptiles are capable of carrying Salmonella ;-).

      On a somewhat related story, when I worked at the Arizona State Lab, we had a cluster of an unusual serovar of Salmonella in three children. All three children lived in different households but co-mingled. All three households also recently got pet bearded dragons. I visited the houses with one of our epidemiologists and did rectal swabs on the three lizards. All three lizards had different serovars of Salmonella, but one of them did have the serovar that infected the three kids. It was cool to have an epidemiologic link to the three cases from one of the lizards!

      • That’s why I always wash my hands with soap after handling big boy here

      • That same law is still in effect, it’s illegal to sell turtles under 4″. I personally think it’s ridiculous but if it ultimately means less turtles in fish bowls than I guess I’m alright with it. As a kid it was a baby turtle that I wanted but I ended up with an adult instead, so even though I’ve had him for 29 years he has to be older than that.

        That is an interesting story about the bearded dragons and salmonella. Thanks for sharing. I keep those too, and a variety of other reptiles. So far no one has contracted salmonella in the house but I take hand washing very seriously whenever animals are handled.

    • Is it still around or has it passed on?

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