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Thread: Thinking about buying a Mata Mata

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    SirKristoff's Avatar
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    Thinking about buying a Mata Mata

    Ive got alot of experiance with reptiles, and quite a bit of it with aquatic turtles...I have read about their requirements as far as temps and pH requirements, as well as their feeding and all of that fun jaz....was wondering if anyone on here had one and had some tips as far as the care for these magnificent creatures....im planning on getting a small one, about 4-6" and putting it in a 50 gallon set up with live plants...i also need to look for a good box filter for it, and best heating methods as far as keeping the water in the 80 degree range. any help would be much appreciated, thanks

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    Devon's Avatar
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    sweeeet, but aren't they a bit dangerous? I don has much reptile experiece though. So I take it that it's for decoration? I don't have any tips, so good luck!

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    SirKristoff's Avatar
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    Nope, not dangerous at all AFIK compared to other turtles, they have no jaw pressure, they feed through suction

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    Devon's Avatar
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    cooool! heehee I saw pics of it on google.. I guess I shouldn't judge a book by it's cover. Amazing looking turtle.

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    Woodnative's Avatar
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    Awesome turtles. Don't forget that they eventually get HUGE!! I knew a guy with one many years ago, but he had to give it up when it became too big.

    A simpler, relatively bare tank may be easier for you to keep clean......these guys make a mess, and you will need to plan on doing massive, total water changes. Don't forget, also, that turtle are long-lived animals and this is a long-term commitment for proper care on your part.

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    SirKristoff's Avatar
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    Yep, they average about 15-18" at full maturity and live upwards of 40 or more years. i took in a turtle that my uncle had for 30 years, was an alligator snapper that weighed about 150 lbs named Greg lol. was actually a really nice turtle compared to your typical alligator snapper or any snapper for that matter, would eat out of your hand and not try and bite or anything which was bizarre. I also had a small Alligator Snapper that a friend of mine got from breeding his two and he gave me a hatchling, raised it for about 9 years and he got about 50 pounds and kept him in a 150 gallon tank with some feeder fish, guppies, and a couple of catfish....also turned out to be a nice turtle which was strange. I figured i would get another and this time i wanted to try a matamata....Though if it lives as long as it could, it looks like it might have to be written off in my will to my children!!!! lol

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    Entwadumela's Avatar
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    Hiya SirKristoff-

    When you get a chance, checkout the "ReptileMan" exhibit in Goldbar. Haven't been there awhile myself, but the last time I was there, he had a nice size mata mata, an albino gator, a descent size ali'snap, a retic, a burm and a bunch of other cool herps.

    What about a pig-nose turtle (Carretochleys insculpta?), ya know, those freshwater turtles that looks like a sea turtle, the one with wings. Those are pretty cool, but they get big too.

    E
    "My Greatest Fear Is, When I Die, The Missus Will Sell All My Stuff For What I Told Her I Got It For"

    I bought a cactus. A week later it died. And I got depressed, because I thought, Damn. I am less nurturing than a desert.

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    N=R* fs fp ne fl fi fc L Pyro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirKristoff View Post
    Nope, not dangerous at all AFIK compared to other turtles, they have no jaw pressure, they feed through suction
    Not wholly true. Just cause they suck in their prey does not mean they cannot deliver a wicked bite. They have a sharp "bill" and it can cause damage if you are not careful. I have seen it first hand
    'My love was science- specifically biology and, more specifically, when placed in a common jar, which of two organisms would devour the other.'

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