“Red eared slider for sale” – it sounds intriguing doesn’t it? Chances are, the little turtles you’ll find at the opposite end of this ad will be very affordable and you’ll probably assume that it will be very easy to care for. While red eared sliders aren’t the hardest pets to care for and they are very affordable, make sure you really think before you buy. Quite often, red eared sliders are bred en masse by disreputable breeders to make as much money as possible.
So where else can you find a red eared slider for sale? Instead of dealing with a disreputable breeder or pet shop (most of which actually buy their animals from disreputable breeders), look for a small breeder that breeds red eared sliders because of their love of the species and the hobby. You can find these folks in reptile magazines or in classified ads in your local newspaper. It may seem tough to tell the difference between one of these kind souls and someone that is out to exploit the species, but after talking to them on the phone for a bit or meeting them face-to-face you will be able to tell the difference. Small-time hobbyists usually just have a small set-up in their house or backyard and it will be very small scale, with a focus on providing an ideal environment for their turtles. The sliders that they have will be healthy, happy and be housed in ideal conditions.
The turtles you’ll find at a big-time breeder will likely be stuffed into as little space as possible to maximize profit. For this reason, if you have any doubts whatsoever as to the reputation of the breeder you are dealing with, ask to see their facilities. Most breeders will be more than happy to show you their breeding area, as long as they have nothing to hide. If they balk at your request, they probably have something they don’t want you to see and you therefore should not deal with them. The red eared slider for sale that they have will be one of dozens—if not hundreds—jammed into inadequate spaces and just treated poorly overall. These people are just out to make a quick buck and any turtle you buy from them will be a subpar specimen—not to mention the fact that you will be supporting their inhumane business practices.
So before answering the “red eared slider for sale” ad, make sure you do your research and talk to some other red eared slider hobbyists. They can point you in the right direction!