Each year, hundreds of thousands of sliders are bred for the pet trade. Many are sold illegally. Some are even given away as game prizes at carnivals and fairs.
Unfortunately, most will die in their first year, due to incorrect husbandry.
If they survive, many will be dumped on overwhelmed rescue groups when they outgrow their small aquarium enclosures. Some will even be released into local ponds where native turtles must compete with them for food and territory. Native turtles may even die as a result of pathogens and parasites carried by released sliders (and vice versa).
HOWEVER… Sliders make great pets for committed, responsible keepers with predator proof/escape proof outdoor ponds, who do their research!! With appropriate care, sliders can live 20-50 years, can grow almost as big as a dinner plate, and can be quite tame.
Prior to bringing a slider home, research, research, research!!! This cannot be stressed this enough! Read articles on the internet (like this one), get books from the local library, and/or contact herptelogical clubs and societies regarding care and housing. And be sure to check with the Dept. of Natural Resources in your state for rules, regulations and permits regarding these turtles!!!
For more information on slider rescue and adoption in Maryland, visit the Mid Atlantic Turtle & Tortoise Society, or email MATTS Adoptions!