Baby turtles sold in Central Florida as holiday gifts may be exposing families to an invisible health risk, according to a Local 6 News report. A Local 6 News investigation has found the turtles are being sold in Central Florida. FDA and health officials want parents to know salmonella may be on the shells and skin of the turtles.

The FDA has banned the sale of red ear slider turtles in the 1970s following a massive outbreak of salmonella poisoning. Turtles less than 4 inches in length were banned because they were easy for children to put in their mouth.

Parents are urged to make sure children wash their hands if they’ve handled the pets, according to the report.

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  • Brook Renwick

    I used to have a baby snapping turtle and I think that they are the cutest things EVER!

  • haley Browning

    Ummm that is so not all red ear turtles it can be on any kind of turtles.! i have 2 red ear turtles & i know they don’t have samanolle however you spell it.
    I have this treatment you get from walmart & put it in there tank & it gets reid of any bad health problems for the turtles.

  • pastor

    what kid of turttle is that and wat does it eat

  • ashley

    why do they abuse turtles and how can they have salminila i thought that the eggs were doing that.

  • Anibal

    Any reptile or anphibian can contract salmanella. you just need to maintain their habitat and make sure there not swimming in their own feces and wash ur hands after handling. ive owned many different kinds of turtles that i have rescued throughout my life and ive never had a problem with disease. Just dont purchase an animal if you cant maintain the enclosure.

  • Jason

    I really want a turtle or some kind of reptile or amphibian when i get my own place but i don’t know what i should get! Is it legal in Texas to keep a baby snapping turtle? And I know they get pretty big, so how long would i be able to keep it before it gets too big?

  • How are they so small????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  • Interesting. In our household, any pets that is brought in is researched for health risk and care instructions. This way, we can be sure that we will all be able to live together in harmony.

  • I really want a little tiny turtle are there any turtles that stay that small?

  • Dwarf Turtles, Miniature Turtles
    Dollar Turtles, Little Green Turtles Home | Feedback | Shop
    Rather frequently, someone will buy a small green turtle
    under the impression that it will stay that small. Usually this
    happens to unsuspecting animal lovers who see these little
    sweet turtles for sale. They then ask how big it will get, and
    they are told that it won’t grow, or that it will stay small.
    They ask how to take care of the turtle, and are told to just
    put it in a water dish and feed it .
    Soon after, the new and inexperienced turtle owner finds out
    that the turtle won’t eat, that it is sick, or that it is growing
    at an unexpected rate. This is, when the learning starts.
    This is also the place to compliment all those people who
    decide to keep their turtle and give it the home it needs, which
    is usually an overwhelming and task and an unexpected expense.
    Chances are that you are reading this page because you are
    one of these people. I am sorry you got tricked into getting a
    pet that turned out not to be what you thought you bought.
    If you have the means to provide for your baby turtle, I would
    encourage you to do so. What seems like an overwhelming task
    at first will become quite straightforward once you have a
    proper setup and a bit of practice.
    Here are a few facts I would like you to know:
    * 99 out of 100 baby turtles die in the first year. Some die, because
    they were not fit to live, some die from stress and filth during
    shipping. Many die from malnutrition, cold, and ignorance.
    Most people who buy a pet want to take good care of it and give it
    their heart. But, unfortunately that doesn’t help, if the information
    is wrong or non-existent.
    * There is no such thing as a “miniature turtle.” Most turtles sold as
    such are baby red-eared sliders or other turtles from the same family.
    These turtles reach an adult size between 7 and 14 and more inches,
    depending on gender.
    * If your little turtle is green with orange cheeks, it is a red-eared
    slider. If it is green with a yellow belly with dark markings, it is
    most likely another slider-type turtle. These are the most common baby
    turtles sold. Do find out what kind of turtle you have, since every turtle
    has somewhat different needs and requirements.
    * It is ILLEGAL in the United States to commercially sell any turtle smaller
    than 4 inches. It is LEGAL to keep, breed, and give away these turtles.
    It is LEGAL to buy/get one from a friend who had a litter.
    (There is an exception for educational purposes.)
    If someone sold you a baby turtle (at a fair, at a store) and lied to you,
    I encourage you to contact the Fish and Game Department (it may be called
    something a bit different in your state) or an animal rescue operation with
    as much information as you have. You will do a good deed. Likely the person
    will get caught, and a small step towards reducing smuggling and illegal sales
    of turtles has been taken; which, and this is what I care most about, will save
    the lives of many turtles.
    Refer to the rest of this web site to find out how to take care of
    your turtle.
    Also, follow some of the links at the home page to find more information
    about turtle conservation.
    Turtles that stay small
    I often get asked whether there are any turtles that stay
    small. The following turtles don’t grow big and are readily
    available in the United States.
    MALE Reeves turtles, spotted turtles (not legal to keep everywhere),
    Diamond back terrapins, and musk turtles all USUALLY stay smaller than
    5 inches. Of these, I would recommend a musk turtle, if you are not
    an experienced turtle keeper. Musk turtles are available through the
    pet trade. Males usually stay smaller than females. Musk turtles are hardy
    and make good pets.
    Contact: Turtlecare Help.
    Last changed: 2008-11-27.
    Copyright: ValeRay Aleks Haecky.

  • Elaine

    I had found a baby red eared slider in a lake near my house but 2weeks later I found out they usually carry sammanelle so I had to realease him back I cried for hours still miss him:(