Can a Florida softshell turtle be a pet?

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Is a Florida softshell turtle the right pet for you? These turtles are native to the Sunshine State, so they’re used to warm weather. They’re also relatively easy to care for, as long as you’re prepared to meet their basic needs.

Here’s what you should know before bringing home a Florida softshell turtle.

Can you hold a softshell turtle?

Softshell turtles are interesting creatures that require special care if you wish to hold them. Because their shell is soft and flexible, it’s especially important to be careful when handling them.

It’s best to support them from underneath when holding them and make sure not to squeeze tightly so that you don’t damage their shells. Their docile nature typically makes them quite comfortable around people but like any living creature, they can still bite if startled.

If you’re looking for a pet turtle to cuddle and play with, a softshell turtle might just be the perfect fit!

What can I feed my softshell turtle?

Feeding softshell turtles can be quite enjoyable, as long as you stick to the right diet. There are a few key types of food these turtles can benefit from. Start with a solid base of aquatic invertebrates, such as crayfish, shrimp, and worms.

These provide ample protein and nutrients for your turtle’s health. Vegetables like squash, green beans, and carrots should also be offered on occasion; make sure to cut them into small pieces so your turtle can eat them easily.

Commercial softshell turtle foods are available too; look for products that contain healthy options like fish meal, wheat germ, insects, vitamins, and minerals. As with any pet feeding routine, be sure to keep an eye on how much your turtle eats; it’s easy to overfeed!

What is the best pet softshell turtle?

Softshell turtles make for unique and interesting pets! With their unique shell shapes, vibrant colors, and personalities, they are a great choice for reptile enthusiasts looking for something different.

The best type of softshell turtle to keep as a pet is the popular and easy-to-care-for spiny softshell turtle.

These stunning aquatic turtles have distinctive settings with black shells covered in yellow spots and are adaptable to multiple environments, making them an ideal choice for owners of varying levels of experience.

Overall, spiny softshells are a great introduction to the world of turtle keeping and will provide you with years of enjoyment!

Can you keep soft-shell turtles in Florida?

Softshell turtles are native to Florida and can often be seen basking in the sun or crawling along the shoreline. While they can make cute and enjoyable pets, it can sometimes be a challenge to keep them alive in captivity.

They require special nutrition like freshwater crustaceans, specialized filtration systems for their water, and ideal temperatures for the tank.

If you don’t have the means or dedication to provide these things, then it’s best to enjoy them in their natural habitat rather than potentially mistreating them through a lack of adequate care. 

However, if you take the time to research what they need and are willing to invest your patience into meeting those needs daily, keeping soft-shell turtles could bring years of laughter and discovery.

Can softshell turtles eat fruit?

Many animals feast on fruits and vegetables; however, it can be confusing to know what turtles should be eating. Softshell turtles are omnivorous, so they do not have strict dietary requirements the way herbivores and strictly carnivorous species do.

In the wild, softshell turtles feed on fish and aquatic vegetation. They will also eat some invertebrates such as insects and other small water creatures. But, did you know that softshell turtles can often enjoy a few pieces of fruit?

Fruits like watermelons, apples, bananas, and berries provide a source of vitamins for these wonderful reptiles and can make for a nice occasional treat. Although not all turtle species choose fruits as part of their diet, softshells may benefit from occasional servings.

How long do softshell turtles live as pets?

Softshell turtles are a popular choice as pets due to their array of captivating personality traits and silly antics. A typical softshell turtle lives between 20-50 years, making them an excellent lifetime companion.

When given the right care, these turtles can make intelligent and loving pets that can stay with their owners for many happy years. While they may take some time to adjust to captivity, they tend to become friendly with time and patience, displaying a strong bond with their keeper.

With appropriate feed and shelter, everyday expenditures are minimal yet the rewards are obvious: a hardy pet that always keeps its owners laughing for decades!


In conclusion, it is up to you to decide whether or not a Florida softshell turtle can indeed be a pet.

With the proper research and precautions, if done correctly, this species of reptile can make a good addition to any household. Not only are they delightful companions but also fun creatures to observe and even interact with.

That being said, keep in mind that pet turtles require commitment and special care to– be similar to any other animal companion.

It is strongly recommended that anyone considering getting a softshell turtle should seek reliable advice on all aspects of caring for one before making their final decision.

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Tonya Esperanza

Tonya Esperanza

Our water turtles are lovely creatures. Their serene manner radiates peacefulness around the house.
That's why taking care of their well being is really important to me, and I looked for the best equipment there is for their tank. Let me share with you what I found.

About Me

Our water turtles are lovely creatures. Their serene manner radiates peacefulness around the house.
That’s why taking care of their well being is really important to me, and I looked for the best equipment there is for their tank. Let me share with you what I found.

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