Apr 09

One small turtle, one big reason not to let it go

Red-eared slider (image via Stahlman)

Red-eared sliders are popular pet turtles. But according to Sara Stahlman of Pennsylvania Sea Grant, “People don’t often realize that these turtles can grow to be up to twelve inches, and they can actually live longer than 30 years. So most pet owners just aren’t prepared for that long-term commitment and so what they do is what they feel is best for the turtle and that’s to release them into the wild.”

But that can harm local ecosystems.

“They’re very aggressive and they can outcompete our native turtles for food and nesting sites,” says Stahlman. So she recommends people do their homework before buying a turtle. And return or re-home unwanted pets instead of releasing them.

 Get Schooled:

Hear Stahlman explain how red-eared sliders pose a threat to the red-bellied turtle in Pennsylvania:

The fine print:




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