How To Take Care Of Mississippi Map Turtle? [Foolproof Care Guide]

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Aquatic turtles are fun to watch, and I totally agree with you. However, species like Mississippi map turtles can be hard to pet due to their neat lifestyle. But if you love challenges, then this turtle should be on your priority list.

Taking care of Mississippi map turtles is easy if you have control over the four conditions,

  1. Housing and decoration
  2. Captive habitat environment
  3. Diet and supplements
  4. Health care

Mississippi map turtles are not demanding, yet handling the species can be a bit tricky. Follow this article on how to take care of Mississippi map turtles and get a fool-proof care sheet of this map turtle sub-species.

How To Take Care Of Mississippi Map Turtle?

If you want to ensure your Mississippi map turtle the best care, researching the species is the first thing you should do. I mean, it is mandatory for an owner to know the approximate size, lifespan, or native of his turtle. Why am I emphasizing the research part?

You know turtles live longer than most other pets. So, if you are not ready for that commitment, you should not get a turtle. Again, each turtle keeper has a preference when it comes to the appearance or size of the pet. You must study whether your turtle can fulfill your desire or not.

Do not worry if you find it hard work to research a turtle species. I am here with everything you need. Let’s start with the basic information on the Mississippi map turtle.

Mississippi Map Turtle: The Species Summary

Mississippi map turtle is one of the two subspecies of the False map turtle. The subspecies go by the scientific name of Graptemys pseudogeographica kohni.


Do you know how the map turtles have got their name? It is because of the map-like pattern on their shell. The Mississippi map turtle is no different and has unique features.

The first distinctive characteristic of the Mississippi map turtles is their shell. It is either brown or olive and is covered with interconnected yellow circles and lines. Those connected lines and dots resemble a map. A serrated, saw-like ridge runs down the center of the Mississippi map turtle carapace. To many beginners, this is the unique point to recognize the species.

Plastron or the lower shell of the Mississippi map turtles can be light green or yellow. A bright brown line runs along the scutes and gives the undershell a wood grain vibe. Those lines fade away with the passing age of the turtle.

Mississippi map turtles own black or dark green skin, and pale yellow stripes run all over the body. Do you know the easiest way to spot a Mississippi map turtle?

You need to observe their eye area. You will notice bright yellow reverse crescents markings sweeping under and behind both eyes. Not only that, these yellow curved lines meet on the top of the head and spit on the sideways. These markings are distinctive and not like any other stripes on the skin.

The solid and round pupil with an unbroken iris is another noticeable feature of the Mississippi map turtles. Their bright eyes have no bar or stripes.

Do you think it is hard to identify turtle species? Try out my new blog post on how to determine turtle species and be an expert in no time.


I guess the medium size of the Mississippi map turtles advantages the owners. They can bring up these pets in a small space.

Generally, the female Mississippi map turtles are bigger than the males and have a carapace of 6 to 10 inches (15 to 25 centimeters). On the other hand, the adult male Mississippi map turtles grow 3.5 to 5 inches ( 9 to 13 centimeters) big. However, the males have larger tails and nails than the females.

Check out how big do other map turtle species grow from this article.

Native Habitat:

Mississippi map turtles are native to the Mississippi state. But the fun fact is, that is not how the subspecies has got its name. These turtle subspecies have been named after the famous Mississippi river.

The mighty Mississippi river crosses almost 10 states, ranging from Minnesota to Louisiana. These turtles are also found in Illinois, Iowa, Texas, and Nebraska. So, you can guess the popularity and availability of these subspecies in the USA.

Mississippi map turtles prefer living in a freshwater source. Rivers, small lakes, ponds, and streams are ideal habitats for this subspecies.


You would find many turtle species that live for half a century or even more. Unfortunately, map turtles do not live that long. A Mississippi map turtle lives 15 to 25 years on average when it lives in an optimum condition. In many cases, captive Mississippi map turtles have made it to 30 to 35 years.

Turtle lifespan is somewhere similar to humans. You can not guarantee a long life no matter what you do. However, it is believed that proper environment, diet, and constant medical care can stretch out the longevity of any turtle species.


Mississippi map turtles are shy but friendly. Do not take the subspecies to be social and open for play. Frequent touch can stress out the turtles and lead to health or mental issues.

Sometimes these turtles prefer swimming in a small group if they are living as a community. Otherwise, just let your Mississippi map turtles live alone.

What will happen if you keep disturbing or touching the Mississippi map turtle? It will get stressed or panicked and bite you with its strong jaw.

Do not mistake these turtles as weak because of their small size. Mississippi map turtles can bite hard and make you bleed. I have discussed how and why a Mississippi map turtle bites in one of my previous write-ups. You can check the blog from this link.

Mississippi Map Turtle Housing Requirements

To build a proper house for a Mississippi map turtle, you have to look out for the following things,

  • Tank
  • Bedding
  • Basking dock
  • Lighting source
  • Heating lamp
  • Tank heater
  • Water filter
  • Decoration


Mississippi map turtles are not as big as their relatives, but it does not mean a congested tank will work for them. When they are hatchlings, a smaller aquarium might work. However, once the turtles are in their adulthood, owners must transform them into a spacious habitat.

You know the male Mississippi map turtles are smaller than the female ones. Hence, they do not require a big tank like the female Mississippi map turtles.

Generally, the baby and young Mississippi male map turtles can live in a 25-gallon tank. However, a 75-gallon aquarium is perfect for one adult male.

Again, you would require at least a 125-gallon fish tank to accommodate an adult female Mississippi map turtle. A 75-gallon tank is enough for young or babies.

If you are planning to house multiple Mississippi map turtles, you must increase the tank size. The general rule is to add half the total amount whenever you introduce a new turtle.

Remember, space is a crucial factor for the Mississippi map turtles. Putting your turtles in a narrow space will hamper their physical growth and cause illness.

See also  Is Calico Map Turtle A Good Pet?


The substrate is not at all necessary for a Mississippi map turtle habitat. Yet, the owner might decide to layer up the bottom to make the tank look more appealing or add aquatic plants.

It is wiser to avoid sand and mud as beddings. Buy the medium-sized gravel, large pebbles, or crushed coral and place it at the tank bottom. I have met users who think riverbed sand and coated rocks are better options for Mississippi map turtles.

Mississippi map turtles are curious by nature, and they might try to taste the substrate. If the element is toxic, the turtle will choke on it and get sick. Hence, you have to be very careful while choosing a substrate for your Mississippi map turtle habitat.

Basking Dock

Mississippi map turtles are avid swimmers, and there is no doubt in that. However, a turtle can not always be in the water swimming or floating. It needs a land area or basking station to rest and soak the wet body.

You can either buy a commercial basking platform or make one for your pet turtle. Usually, metal sheets without any sharp edge, plastic, foam, ceramic tiles, logs, etc., are the best kinds of DIY basking dock for Mississippi map turtles.

No matter if you are buying or DIYing a basking dock for your Mississippi map turtle, make sure it fulfills the following requirements,

  • A ramp is mandatory in any basking platform. Otherwise, the turtle will struggle to get on the dock because you know Mississippi map turtles do not excel at jumping. If you plan to make a rocky land area, make sure the beach mark is on the same level as the waterline.
  • The dock or the land area should be completely dry and non-accessible to water.
  • Mississippi map turtles are small and weigh around 2 to 4 kg. The platform should be strong enough to hold the weight of the turtles.

What happens if you provide no basking dock to the Mississippi map turtles? Well, turtles need a spot to bask in the heat and soak the dry body. If the turtles roam around in the wet body, they will fall victim to bacterial and fungal attacks.

So, if you do not want your pet Mississippi map turtle to suffer from shell rot or infection, get a basking dock today. Check out my favorite basking platform models from this article.

Lighting Source

Do Mississippi map turtles need lights in their habitat? Of course, they do.

Mississippi map turtles require UV lights to function their bodies properly. UV bulbs spread off two types of rays, UVA and UVB. While UVA exposures influence the mental health of the turtles, UVB has more control over the physical condition.

See, Mississippi map turtles absorb vitamins and minerals from the food. But the meals are not always enough for them. Experts advise that turtles require vitamin D3 to utilize the food calcium. And as you know, the sun is the ultimate source of vitamin D.

The wild Mississippi map turtles get the necessary UV rays from the sub. But the captive turtles depend on artificial UV lamps.

UV lights give off both UVA and UVB rays. The turtles generate vitamin D3 in their bodies with the help of the UVB, and as a result, they can absorb the required calcium from food.

What if there is no UV source in the habitat? The answer is simple. Your Mississippi map turtle will have an underdeveloped body due to the lack of vitamin D3 and calcium. In most cases, turtles suffer from MBD (Metabolic bone disease) when there are insufficient UVB rays. Again, the lack of UVA disturbs the digestion and activity level of the turtle.

A group of scientists has proved that a hatchling who gets insufficient UV rays dies within a year. Even if the turtle survives, it will have a fragile body structure.

Which UV light is best for the Mississippi map turtles? As map turtles are aquatic, 2.5% and 5% UVB lamps will be ideal for them. While setting up these lights, maintain a constant distance of 12 inches and 18 inches from the dock.

10% UV lights are also available in the market, but those are not for aquatic turtles. Again, the full-spectrum or Sun-spectrum bulbs are total traps as they contain a negligible amount of UV rays.

I understand if you think choosing the right type of UV bulb for your pet Mississippi map turtle is challenging. I have the best solution for you. Just click here, and you will get a fool-proof buyer guide for a UV light.

Heating Lamp

Mississippi map turtles require another type of light, the heating lamp in their habitat. You know Mississippi map turtles are cold-blooded. It means these creatures depend on their surroundings for heat and warmth. So, on chilly or cold days, they need a source of heat to regulate their body temperature.

In the wild, the sun is the ultimate provider of heat. But in captivity, the Mississippi map turtles hardly get the sun rays. So, the experts recommend installing a heating lamp inside the enclosure. The lamp spreads heat and keeps the basking area warm. Turtles soak their bodies under the light while basking on the dock.

If you do not install any heating lamp inside your turtle enclosure, it will not come to the basking area and stay in the water forever. As a result, the risk of bacterial attack and cold diseases would increase.

You can buy a separate heating lamp for your Mississippi map turtle enclosure. However, I always suggest getting a light that works as a UV lamp and a heating source. I have been using Mercury light for this purpose, and the service is satisfactory.

Do you want to know my choice for heating lamps? Check this article to get the best deal on heating lights for Mississippi map turtles.

Do Mississippi Map Turtles Need Night Light?

Like most other turtle species, Mississippi map turtles are diurnal. It means the turtles are most active during the daytime and sleep during the night. You might know that map turtles sleep with their eyes closed.

Yes, that is right. The Mississippi map turtles sleep underwater with closed eyes to avoid any disturbance. If there is any light in the enclosure or in the room, it might interrupt their sound sleep. Hence, there is no need for a night light in the map turtle habitat.

However, owners sometimes install viewing lights to observe the turtles during the night. It is okay as long as the brightness is not irritating the turtle’s eyes. Again, you might set up blue or red nightlamps in the habitat, which serve both heat and low-intensity light.

Tank Heater

The heating lamp provides the required heat in the land area. Right? But what happens when the Mississippi map turtles swim in the cold water?

When a turtle is exposed to cold weather, it slows down the metabolism to cope with the surroundings. Even if there is a temperature drop of 4 to 5 degrees, it messes up with the turtle’s activity. A turtle spends more hours basking if the water is cold for a swim. Again, frequent swimming in the cold water might lead to respiratory infection or other diseases.

The best way to regulate tank water temperature is by setting up a heater.

Tank heaters are a blessing for the Mississippi map turtles, especially during the cold days. The digital heaters let the users set the desired temperature. Hence, the turtle keepers can regulate the heat as per the requirement.

Generally, the power of a water heater depends on the size of the tank. For example,

Tank Size (Liter) Tank SIze (Gallon) Tank Heater Power (watt)

So, before making a purchase, you need to calculate the power you need for your turtle tank. You can definitely set up multiple tank heaters or use a single powerful one. Experts often advise installing multiple heaters so that there is a backup option.

See also  How Big Do Map Turtles Get?

Again, there are many types and brand tank heaters available in the market for Mississippi map turtles. You can check the best water heaters for turtles from this link.

Water Filter

Mississippi map turtles are freshwater turtles. Hence it is necessary to maintain the water quality inside the enclosure.

Mississippi map turtles eat in the water and dump the waste in the same place. So, the water gets filthy and hazy due to the food scraps and poop. It is nearly impossible to clear out the filth manually. So, what can you do?

Installing a water filter can eliminate all these problems. The filters remove the dirt and filth with multiple filtration systems and re-circulate clean water. I have been using canister filters for my aquatic turtles, and I have never been disappointed. Catch my unbiased opinion on the popular canister tank filters in this article.

However, installing a water filter is not enough to keep the Mississippi map turtle habitat clean and hygienic. You have to replace 25% of the whole water every week and clean the entire tank once a month.


It is always necessary to make your pet turtles feel at home even in captive situations. Decorating the habitat with live plants and rocks will serve the purpose.

Many plants require the substrate to grow, while many can thrive without any substrate. I obviously suggest you go with the second one. Taking care of both plants and turtles is not an easy task, and you might consider artificial plastic plants for decoration purposes.

Mississippi map turtles need privacy from the world from time to time. During those hours, they need to hide among broad leaves or rocks. Otherwise, the turtle will feel stressed or panicked. Plant leaves, rocks, logs, etc., are excellent hiding places for the Mississippi map turtles.

Do you know which plants are safe for the Mississippi map turtle enclosure? Skim through this article to find out the top plants for aquatic turtles.

I have discussed everything you need to set up an indoor habitat for Mississippi map turtles. It is possible to build an outdoor habitat if you have enough space in your backyard.

While setting up an outdoor habitat, you need to consider a few things. Such as,

  1. The privacy and security of the turtles
  2. The enclosure should have a half sunny and half shady place
  3. There must be a land and a water area with proper vegetation

You do not have to install a heating lamp or UV light in an outdoor habitat. The sun will do the work. However, a pond tank heater or water filters might be necessary.

It is wiser to cover the turtle pond with a chicken wire or mesh and build a boundary on the perimeter. This way, your Mississippi map turtles will be safe from any potential predators.

If you live in a low-lying area where flood is a common phenomenon, in that case, an indoor habitat will be more suitable.

Follow this article to get more details on how to set up an ideal map turtle habitat.

Temperature & Humidity

A well-arranged enclosure is nothing if you fail to provide proper temperature for the Mississippi map turtles. Here is an ideal temperature chart that you must follow,

Water Temperature Basking Temperature Air Temperature
70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit90 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit80 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit

The heating lamp controls the basking and air temperature, while the tank heater is responsible for the water temperature.

Keep the heating lamp and UV light turned on only 10 to 12 hours a day, even on cold days. If it is severely cold, you can install red light, which spreads low-intensity heat with a little brightness.

However, keep the tank heater on 24/7. But during the night, you need to drop the temperature by 5 to 10 degrees. As the Mississippi map turtles sleep underwater, a cold temperature helps them have a sound sleep.

Remember, if you fail to provide the right temperature inside the Mississippi map turtle enclosure, the pet will feel uncomfortable. Too hot or too cold temperatures will force the turtles to escape the habitat.

When the temperature falls under 60 degrees Fahrenheit, the Mississippi map turtles become lethargic and prepare for hibernation. Hence, maintaining the right temperature is mandatory.

I always suggest installing a thermometer inside the Mississippi map turtle habitat. This way, you can observe the rise and fall of the temperature.

It is also necessary to maintain a high humidity level in the turtle habitat. You can set up a hygrometer to track the humidity to ensure the land area never gets too dry.

Mississippi Map Turtle Diet

Mississippi map turtles are omnivorous, which means their diet includes both animal and plant matter. Though these turtles have plenty of options, pellets are their staple meal in captivity. These store-bought items contain all the nutrients the Mississippi map turtle requires.

However, you must add green leafy vegetables to the map turtle diet to balance the meal.

Here are the possible food options for a Mississippi map turtle,

Animal Matter Plant Matter Fruits Commercial Food Supplements
Feeder fish















Green crabs



Wasps and ants

Fly larvae 
Romaine lettuce













Water lillies






Turnip green

Mustard green


Collard green









Pellets  Mutlivitamin

Vitamin D3


You can add more items to the food list, but make sure those are safe for the turtle. You can always consult the vet before trying out new options for the Mississippi map turtle.

Explore other food options for Mississippi map turtles from here.

Foods You Should Never Offer Your Mississippi Map Turtle

Mississippi map turtles can eat a variety of food. But it does not mean you will feed the pet anything you find. There are many items you should never offer your turtle. Such as,

  • Iceberg lettuce
  • Nuts
  • Fireflies
  • Mice
  • Wild snail
  • Wild shrimp
  • Processed food
  • Fatty food
  • Junk food
  • Dairy items
  • Bakery items
  • Canned food
  • Dog food
  • Vegetables that contain pesticides

How Often Should You Feed A Mississippi Map Turtle?

The feeding schedule of a Mississippi map turtle totally depends on its age. At the primary age, the hatchlings require more food for growth and development. But as they start growing, they lose their appetite, and their meal size decreases.

Here is the feeding schedule of Mississippi map turtles of different ages,

Feeding Schedule Of Baby Mississippi Map Turtles

I have already mentioned that baby turtles have more appetite than adult ones. So, you have to feed the babies every day. You can divide the whole meal and feed the hatchlings twice a day.

While preparing their meal, focus on the pellets, but do not forget to add extra veggies. If the baby is refusing to eat, treat it with chopped fruits to bring back the appetite.

Supplements fulfill the vitamin and nutrition lack in the babies. Multivitamins once a week and calcium supplements thrice a week will work for the hatchlings.

Feeding Schedule Of Young Mississippi Map Turtles

With the growing age, Mississippi map turtles lose their interest in food. Hence, feeding the turtles every other day is totally healthy. You can still follow a daily meal system by dividing the food quantity in half.

Balance each meal of the pets with animal and plant matter. Use fruits and live animals as a treat. And of course, do not forget the supplements.

Feeding Schedule Of Adult Mississippi Map turtles

An adult Mississippi map turtle has little appetite for food, and a thrice-a-week feeding schedule is okay for it. In many cases, adult turtles prefer eating plant matter more than animal protein.

No matter how old your turtle is, a balanced diet is mandatory. Sprinkle multivitamin on the meal once a week and calcium thrice a week. Preying on insects and live foods might entice the old turtles to eat.

See also  Map Turtle vs. Painted Turtle: Which One Is Better As Pet?

How Much Should You Feed A Mississippi Map turtle?

You have to be careful with the quantity of food you are offering the Mississippi map turtle. Why?

The reason is that the lack of nutrients causes malnutrition. Again, feeding the turtle excess food will lead to obesity.

Mississippi map turtles have a wild instinct and might eat as much as you provide them. These opportunistic feeders beg you for food even after having a full belly. Hence, always follow the rules to determine the meal amount for the turtles.

The two popular rules to decide the food quantity of a Mississippi map turtle are,

  1. The head method
  2. The 15 minutes rule

The head method:

This method involves your imagination. You need to provide the amount of food that fits in the turtle’s head if it were empty.

Or you can manage a bowl about the same size as the turtle head. Now fill the bowl with pellets, vegetables, and other items, and your turtle meal is ready.

The 15-minute rule:

Experts believe that turtles eat the necessary amount of food in the first 15 minutes. So, you can leave more than enough food in the turtle enclosure for 15 minutes and let the pets eat. After that period, remove the leftovers, and you are done.

Where And When To Feed A Mississippi Map Turtle?

Mississippi map turtles prefer eating while swimming or resting in the water. If you provide them food in any other place, the pets might not eat. Hence, throw the food in the water.

Again, turtles are most hungry during the early morning and in the evening. So, feed the Mississippi map turtles during those hours, and the pets will eat with a great appetite.

If you are too busy to keep track of the feeding schedule of the turtle, then install an automatic turtle feeder. The device allows the users to decide the food quantity and the time of the meal. Check out the best turtle feeders from this link.

Mississippi Map Turtle Not Eating: Why?

Like all other animals, Mississippi turtles do not have a constant appetite. It is possible that your turtle refuses to eat from time to time. As a responsible owner, you should know why your pet is behaving this way.

I can think of 4 probable reasons why a Mississippi map turtle loses its appetite. Such as,


Appetite loss is the common symptom of most diseases. Weight loss, lethargy, coughing, sneezing, wheezing, etc., are other signs that indicate that your turtle is sick. Treat your turtle with proper medicine and a balanced diet. Once your turtle recovers from the disease, it will start eating again.

Improper Tank Temperature:

Temperature below 60 degrees Fahrenheit can seriously mess up the metabolism of the Mississippi map turtle. Generally, turtles stop eating and drop their activity level to cope with the cold weather. If your turtle refuses to eat, check the habitat temperature first. The suitable temperature range for Mississippi map turtles is 70 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit.


Mississippi map turtles get stressed easily when you handle them too often. Also, a newly-bought turtle may take time to get used to the home. The panicked turtle may refuse to eat at first. The turtles will eat as usual once they relax.

Boring Meal Routine:

What will happen if I give you the same meal every day? You will get bored and lose your appetite. Right? The same thing happens with the Mississippi map turtles if you offer the same food every day. Instead, bring variety to the diet and treat them with fruits every now and then.

Mississippi Map Turtle Health Issues And Treatments

Mississippi map turtles are blessed with a lifespan of up to 35 years. The turtle will lose years if it gets severely ill or goes without treatment for a long time. Hence, every turtle owner should at least have the primary idea of the potential health diseases of the pet turtle.

Here is a brief discussion of the possible health threats of Mississippi map turtles,

1. Shell Problems

Shell Rot

The fungal or bacterial attack causes SCUD or shell rot in the Mississippi map turtles. Generally, bacteria make their way into the turtle’s shell through a scratch or cut on the scute. The condition can be severe if left untreated for a long time.

Generally, the rotten scute gets black, soft, and mushy. In most cases, the wound spread bad odor and fluid.

If your turtle exhibits any sign of shell rot, isolate it immediately. Now keep the turtle in a warm place and away from water. Clean the wound with disinfectant every day for a week, and the turtle will feel better soon. Consult a vet if there is no development in the condition.


Overfeeding of protein and low humid enclosure lead to pyramiding. Generally, the scutes of the Mississippi map turtle will look bumpy and abnormal if it is suffering from pyramiding. Prescribed medicine, a balanced diet, and a quality enclosure can cure the condition.

Shell Peeling

Overfeeding protein, too hot basking spots, low-quality water, and bacterial disease can cause unhealthy peeling. Shedding is healthy if it occurs once in a few months. But if the scutes come off in an abnormal way, then it is not expected at all. A healthy diet and well-arranged housing can prevent the condition.

Click here and get more details on 13 shell problems and treatments of a Mississippi map turtle.

2. Parasitic Diseases

Internal Parasite

Parasites enter into the Mississippi map turtle’s body via food or water and start spreading. Once they are overgrown in population, the host exhibits symptoms of sickness. Diarrhea, vomiting, and abnormal poop are the symptoms of this disease. Deworming the turtle once a year and a hygienic enclosure will prevent this condition.

3. Eye Problems

Swollen Eyes

Mississippi map turtles often suffer from swollen eye problems. Low water quality, vitamin A deficiency, and eye infection are mainly responsible for this condition.

Your turtle will have puffy eyes and abnormal tissue development around the eyes due to this condition. Also, there might be fluid discharge from the eyes. The turtle will recover with eye drops, proper medicine, and a balanced diet.

4. Other Diseases


Lack of vitamin A causes hypovitaminosis. Weight and appetite loss, lethargy, flaky skin, swollen eyes, runny nose, etc., are the symptoms of vitamin A deficiency. Vitamin A shots, antibiotics, and a balanced diet can cure sick turtles.

Respiratory Infection

Bacterial infection in the lung leads to respiratory illness. Lethargy, trouble in breathing, fluid discharge eyes, puffy eyes, appetite loss, and frequent basking are the signs of this condition.

A Mississippi map turtle with respiratory illness will hardly get a full recovery. Yet, you have to provide the turtle with proper treatment.

Organ Failure

Kidney failure, liver stone, paralysis, etc., are serious health issues. But unfortunately, these conditions have no cure. The turtle has to be under constant care and medication,

Get access to 42 Mississippi map turtle health problems and treatments from this article.

Community Habitat For Mississippi Map Turtles

Mississippi map turtles are shy, but they can get aggressive sometimes. Owners often find it challenging to choose the perfect tankmate for this subspecies. Here is a list of companions that can get along with a Mississippi map turtle,

  • Koi fish
  • Snails
  • Neon Tetra
  • Oscars
  • Cichlids
  • Comet goldfish
  • Fishes with rapid swimming speed

Guppy, lobsters, shrimps, etc., are bad tankmates for the Mississippi map turtles. Check this article to learn more about the community habitat for a Mississippi map turtle.

Mississippi Map Turtle Caresheet: The Summary

  • Get a 75-gallon tank for a male Mississippi map turtle and a 125-gallon tank for an adult female.
  • Install a UV light, heating lamp, tank heater, water filter, thermometer, and basking dock.
  • There is no need for substrate in the habitat. Yet, if you want to put any substrate, go for river sand or medium-sized gravel.
  • Decorate the tank with live plants, hiding sports, and other accessories.
  • The basking temperature of the enclosure should be around 90 degrees Fahrenheit, and the water temperature should range from 70 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Feed the Mississippi map turtles a balanced diet of animal and plant matter. Do not forget to sprinkle supplements on each meal and follow the feeding schedule strictly.
  • Look out for any health issue symptoms. Take immediate actions if necessary. I recommend regular medical check-ups to avoid any unexpected condition.
  • Choose the Mississippi map turtle tank mate wisely. You need to increase the tank size and the food amount if you are adding any companion.


Mississippi map turtles are perfect for intermediate or advanced turtle keepers. As this turtle gets stressed easily due to frequent handling, beginners will face challenges raising this subspecies. Follow the above care sheet to ensure the primary requirement of the turtle. If you see any issue, consult an expert immediately.

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About Author

Muntaseer Rahman started keeping pet turtles back in 2013. He also owns the largest Turtle & Tortoise Facebook community in Bangladesh. These days he is mostly active on Facebook.


This site is owned and operated by Muntaseer Rahman. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to This site also participates in other affiliate programs and is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies.