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Reptisun Compact UVB 10 produces too much UVB?!

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  • Reptisun Compact UVB 10 produces too much UVB?!

    I bought it a couple of days ago for my 55 gallon. I put it around 8 inches from the basking area. Now today when I got home, I saw two of my small painted turtles on them. There eyes looked extremely puff and it had a white outline. So I got them into the water and they still had their eyes temporary closed.

    I have never had that happen to my turtles during basking.

    It is only with the aluminum reflect uvb 10 compact that it happened. I am thinking that maybe it is too strong although I already put it 8 inches away. I am hoping that they were just in a deep sleep. It took almost 10 minutes for one of my turtles to completely open his eyes.

    Tell me about your experience with reptisun 10 compact uvb. And also can there be other reasons for its behavior?​

    I use the ReptiSun 10.0 compact at about 6 inches away from the basking area. I believe the white stuff you're seeing might be due to lack of humidity in the air as well as just their eyes drying out. My turtles get it occasionally too. UV bulbs are fine as long as they're not closer than 6 inches to the basking platform.

    As far as I'm aware as long as the bulb is at least 6 inches away you're turtles aren't in any danger from it.

    The puffy eyes could also be a vitamin A deficiency...have you changed their diet at all recently? Or have their eating habits changed at all?​

    No, the white puffy eye happened only today. There diet has been normal. Everything else is normal. I don't know what to do. I've been trying to give my turtles the best I could but it seems like I am doing more harm. I dont think its Vitamin A deficieny since it only occured today and I just got the tube.

    What were you using for a UV bulb before you got the compact bulb? It's also possible that what you're seeing is a delayed reaction caused by something else and purely coincidental to the addition of the new bulb. Do they get plenty of vitamin A in their diet? What kind of filter do you use and how's the clarity of the water? It's also possible that what you're seeing is the onset of an eye infection. You might want to take them to a vet just to be safe. A checkup can't hurt, and will most definitely make you feel better regardless of what the vet says; if nothing is wrong then that's great, if there is some kind of problem you'll get a head start on curing them and reversing the condition.

    I'm not questioning your husbandry, just trying to throw out ideas that might lead to a possible solution.​

    Well, the water is totally clean. My two turtles that were on the basking area are doing fine. One of my turtle still has his eye lids covered while he swims. I am starting to get really worried. But thanks for your help.

    They do sometimes swim with their eyes closed, at least mine do. Especially after they've been basking for a long time or after they've been sleeping, they'll swim with their eyes closed. I'm not sure that this is something that you should be worried about, but if it would make you feel better then take the turtle to the vet. It definitely won't hurt to get the turtle checked out.

    As a side note, how many turtles are living in this 55 gallon tank, and how big are they? Is it possible that they all can't bask given the room that they have? That could definitely lead to eye problems if that one turtle can't bask properly.​

    I have four very small turtles in there. They are about an inch. No I have more than enough room for them to bask in. I also have another platform for them that I havent put on because they have a lot of room. I put the water fairly deep. The water looks very very clear. The water temperature is about 75-77. The basking temperate is around 85 though the temperature if you touch the platform is around 95-100.

    I am a bit relieved to hear that sometimes your turtles swim with eyes close because thats how mine is doing right now. I was really afraid and sad but now I feel a bit better.​

    I'm not sure what you mean when you say the temperature when touching the platform is 95-100 degrees, but it shouldn't be any more than 90 degrees. I use a digital thermometer that I set directly on the basking platform. I try to get mine to stabilize at 88 degrees, because the height of the turtle will raise that temp to right about 90 degrees. If your basking area is between 95 and 100 degrees, that's way too high and you are risking dehydrating your turtles. Try to get it so that it's not much more than 10 degrees higher than the water temperature (I keep my water temperature at 78 degrees in the winter months, only because the room temperature is much colder than in the summer, obviously). All you need to do is make it warm enough to entice them to bask, and ten degrees warmer is generally all the difference that's needed to accomplish that.

    Good luck, and keep us posted on what's happening with your babies.

    I have the zoomed turtle log. When i put the thermeter right on the log it reads over 100. But when i lift the thermeter a little off the log about 1mm, then it is around 85. I think the log absorbs the heat and so it makes it other than air temperature. I hope I am not frying the turtles. I am using a 40 watt incandescent bulb around 8 inches away.

    Polished or brushed aluminium reflectors approx. double the UVB output. Here is a link with very good stats about many comon UVB bulbs.

  • #2
    Yeah, I knew that. But I thought that if mercury vapor light was okay for turtle, compact 10 uvb with aluminum reflector would be suitable for them.

    John.... Your little guys might need some adjustment time for the higher UVB output. If you were using something like a Repti Glo 8.0 fluorescent tube w/reflector set at 8" away it puts out approx. 60 mw/cm2. The Reptisun 10.0 compact w/reflector dome set at 8" puts out approx. 160 mw/cm2, at (10" - 110mw/cm2) and at (12" - 75 mw/cm2).
    What I would do is raise your lamp to 10" or so and let your hatchlings get used to a gradual increase in UVB. Or even back it away 12" for a week or so ( 75 mw/cm2 about the same as you had), then lower to 10" for a while and see the results. There is no point to drying the little guys too much for long periods of time with alot of UVB. As they get older they could probable take the higher UVB. Also with the heat lamp, its the internal body temperature of the turtle at the basking dock that's important. If the dock is getting to 100F then the hatchlings might be getting up to critical internal temp. as well. I would have to agree with Pi's_Human on that. Probably a tad too high. Your hatchlings don't have too much mass and can heat up very quickly. Good luck with your little guys, they are so precious​

    Thanks, Pi, Claw and everyone else. I am just wondering if you guys have the same problem with the basking platform overheating. Like I said, if the theometer is lying flat on the dock then it is a little over 100 degrees. But if I take the theometer off but hold it very close to the basking area it goes to 85. And the ironic part is that that would make it a little closer to the light. So the air temperature seems to be 85 but the platform is like a frying pan. Anyone have that problem. And I am only using a 40 watt incandescent bulb.

    I don't have that particular problem, but I have an above tank basking area made out of river rocks siliconed to plexiglass. I've never used that particular log before, sorry I can't offer much in that area.

    John..... maybe you didn't get the drift of my last post above. Did you ever hear the saying, "It's so hot outside I could fry eggs on the street pavm't"? Well basically you have the same thing in your tank with the heat lamp and the dock. Outside the air might be 100F but the street pavm't might be 125F, In your tank the dock is 100F and the surrounding air is 85F. Same concept. Solid material absorbs heat more readily than air. It usually takes radiated heat from the earth to wam the surface air, and in your tank it's the radiated heat from the dock that heats the surrounding air. The farther you get away from the radiated heat the closer you come to the ambient air in the room. Yes the closer to the lamp you get the hotter it feels because you hand absorbs the heat, but the air at that point isn't as hot.

    I would adjust the heat lamp at a distance from the dock to read 90F not 100F and then go an additional height of the turtles shell. In other words the 90F will be at the top of the turtles shell. Don't forget that your turtle will absorb heat like the dock or street pavm't, and there is a limit to a turtles internal temp. especially hatchlings. I hope I got the point across. Everyone has the same heat absorption of the dock and turtle whether they are aware of it or not.​

    Thanks, I have lowered the temperature. But one of my turtles, his eyes is still close and hasn't moved but I know he is still alive. Are there any solutions I should put him in to make him feel better in addition to seeing a vet.

    You can use a solution of PolyViSol, which is children's liquid vitamins. Soak the turtle in an equal solution of warm water and PolyViSol. If the turtle has an eye infection this won't cure it, you really should get it to a vet as soon as possible.

    John.... I would follow Pi's_Human advice. Also on the same lines, read #11 of this link, it deals what Pi's is talking about.

    Check this link also, should help. http://www.austinstu...are/medeyes.htm

    If the problem just started when you changed to the new UVB bulb and the eyes aren't swollen, it just might be a hydration problem. If the eyes are puffy I think a vet is in order. Anyway, if the eyes are NOT open in a day or are puffy, then your turtle has issues, see a vet for sure. Hope your turtle gets well soon

    My turtle got much better after three days i stopped using reptisun. I tried it today for a couple of hours and one of the turtles eyes got white and puffy again. He cant even open one of his eyes. The reptisun is placed 6 inches vertically and 10 inches horizontally from the basking area. I thought that would be more than enough. I dont get why this only seems to happen to my turtles

    I'm not sure I understand 6 inches vertically and 10 inches horizontally from the basking area... Have you tried raising the reptisun as opposed to just getting rid of it? How long are you leaving the reptisun on during the day?


    I mean 6 inches high from the basking area and 10 inches from across it. Make sense? I know part of the reason is because they keep looking at that darn light. But I am not sure if it is because of the intensity of the bulb or because I am putting it too low because I think the height/depth distance is what counts. How far across I put it doesnt really make a difference.

    They aren't getting too much UVB--I mean can you imagine what the sun produces and a wild turtle or a captive turtle laying in the real sun feels. No bulb produces enough to be equal to the sun. Your little guys just need to adjust. The idea of pulling the bulb back to maybe like 10 inches away for a week or two then moving it closer for a few weeks would be my suggestion. I think your little guys just need to acclimate to the improved UVB they are receiving.


    Could there be any deficiencies that dont allow them to tolerate high uvb. I am currently feeding them reptmin and cuttlebone. Even a few hours of uvb light seem to make there eyes swell up.

    John, I have very similar problem to yours. My 18 month old painted started having eye problems after I switched from VitaLite to ReptiSun10. I tried many things (vitamins, cod liver oil, pedialite, vet visit) with little success. I'll try removing the ReptiSun and see what happens. I wish I had seen your posts sooner, I've been monitoring the First Aid forum instead of this one...

    If it turns out that the ReptiSun is to blame, I wouldn't think that the problem is too much UVB. Perhaps it also emits small amounts of UVC, which is known to be harmful.​

    Yeah its crazy. I mean I tried to put it further away but its still gving my turtles eye problems. Ive had used the reptisun 5 no problem, but not the compact one.