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Thiamine Deficiency?

Discussion in 'Turtles' started by Microscope Jockey, Nov 11, 2004.

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  1. Microscope Jockey

    Microscope Jockey Elite Member

    DISCLAIMER: I have no interest whatsoever in keeping turtles at the moment but I study aquatic pathology so I was wondering:

    Do turtles ever get thiamine deficiency from eating feeder fish?

    An aside: what is the study of turtles and tortoises called?
     
  2. kenman1963

    kenman1963 Moderator

    it is possible for turtles as far as I know because it has been documented in garter and water snakes that feed primarily on feeders.

    relating to turtles : chelonia, chelonian, cheloniasm
     
  3. Microscope Jockey

    Microscope Jockey Elite Member

    Chelonology? I think chelonianism would be discrimination against turtles and torts or else an obsession with them. :p ;) I was just wondering because I was thinking about how it was a problem in piscivorous fish when I read the article about the runty turtle in the new Reptiles Magazine.
     
  4. kenman1963

    kenman1963 Moderator

    Silly me,,,,I should know that it had to end in ology !!!
     
  5. furryscaly

    furryscaly Elite Member

    I don't know if they can get a deficiency from that or not. I've only known it to happen in garter and water snakes, but there are LOTS of other animals that eat small fish like that too. In the snakes it causes seizures, but I've never had any problems with my turtles eating fish. The bulk of their diet happens to be minnows and collards, but they get a wide variety of other stuff too like bok choy, dandelions, worms, crix, mealies, krill, squid, etc. I think it would be tough to give them a deficiency though, just because they have a much more varied diet than the snakes. I STILL can't figure out how snakes can get along in the wild just fine without any thiamine problems. This subject is very interesting to me. If you have ny answers please fill me in!
     
  6. Microscope Jockey

    Microscope Jockey Elite Member

    Ummm Matt feeder fish cause thiamine deficiency because they are high in the enzyme thiamase that degrades thiamine before the animal can use it. This makes feeding piscivorous fish problematic sometimes. Most uncooked fish has a fairly high level of thiamase. Apparently some animals can counteract thiamase with another enzyme and some cannot, which is why I asked.
     
  7. furryscaly

    furryscaly Elite Member

    Yeah, I know about the enzyme. Maybe turtles can counteract it and garters can't. Still, it makes me wonder why they can't. I mean, they eat fish in the wild. Its like an animal that eats poisonous plants, without having any means to counteract the poisons. It just doesn't make sense to me.
     
  8. Microscope Jockey

    Microscope Jockey Elite Member

    Yeah but they don't eat JUST fish. I think other things they eat have the enzyme, or whatever molecule, that counteracts thiamase.
     
  9. furryscaly

    furryscaly Elite Member

    Yeah, but what about water snakes? They don't eat much else other than fish. Hmm, is there a name for whatever it is that counteracts thiaminase? I wonder if its in frogs.
     
  10. Microscope Jockey

    Microscope Jockey Elite Member

    They eat frogs, crayfish, and the occaisonal rodent according to some study I have around here and they eat different sorts of fish namely NOT goldfish, which happen to have a rather high amount of thiamse. I think I may be spelling it wrong it may be thiaminase.
     
  11. KrokadilyanGuy3

    KrokadilyanGuy3 Elite Member

    Yes, turtles are often credited for having thiamine deficiency. As far as I know, all fish eating herps often do experience the deficiency because of the lack of knowledge, over usage and choices of fish that are being used. Too bad Goldfish are easily obtainable..
    Zane
     
  12. furryscaly

    furryscaly Elite Member

    Yeah, goldfish do have a lot of thiaminase. That's why I don't use them. Plus, as you stated, my turtles and snakes wouldn't be eating many goldies in the wild. Hmm, so do turtles show any symptoms of thiamine deficiency like the snakes? I wonder how much thiamine there is in the other foods I give my turtles. They go through a couple dozen minnows a week, and eat a lot of collards and crickets too though. I mentioned earlier the other stuff I feed them too, but its in much smaller quantities compered to the fish and collards. In the summer dandelions are the primary plant fed, taking over the collard greens.
     
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