Eastern Painted Turtle

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 Eastern Painted Turtle Powered By Docstoc
					Introducing Turtles
•Turtles are reptiles, belonging to the order Testudines
•Unlike other vertebrates, their shoulders are located inside
the ribcage
• They are ectothermic or “cold-blooded,” with dry, scaly
skin, and breathe with lungs
•They must hibernate to survive our winters, but painted
turtles can sometimes be seen swimming below the ice in
•Some species are often seen basking in the sun
•Turtles lay eggs in sand or soil, and leave them to hatch
months later. They do not care for their young
                Turtle Anatomy:
The shell is the turtles most distinctive feature. It
consists of an upper part, the carapace, and a
lower part, the plastron, connected by the bridge.
 Can a turtle crawl out of its shell?
 No – the shell is fused to the spine, and is
mainly made up of the flattened ribs covered
  with plates of a fingernail-like material
  Our local turtle species include…

•Eastern painted turtle
•Common snapping turtle
•Stinkpot musk turtle
•Spotted turtle
•Wood turtle
•Eastern box turtle
•Red-eared slider (introduced from the south)
The Common Snapping Turtle:
    • Chelydra serpentina
     • Family: Chelidridae

       A large adult weighs 30 lbs, but 40-60 pounders are not uncommon.
       They are generally dark brown above, creamy white below, and the
carapace is often covered with algae
       The plastron is very small for the turtle’s size
       They have very long tails
       Their heads are large with two barbels on the chin.
                         Habitat and Range

Snappers prefer ponds and lakes, or slow moving rivers, with muddy
bottoms and aquatic vegetation
They range from the Rockies to Southern Canada, all through the U.S. and
Mexico, through Central and South America as far south as Ecuador. They
have the largest distribution of any turtle in North America
              Reproduction/life cycle
•Snappers reach sexual maturity at about 8 inches in carapace
length, usually between five and six years old.
•They generally mate in Spring, and lay eggs in June.
•Females dig a cavity with their back legs and lay between 17 and
55 eggs.
•Nests are usually within two feet of water, but may be as far
away as a mile.
•After two to three months 1inch long hatchlings emerge, around
•Young snappers must migrate to water, but will stay in shallow
water because they are very poor swimmers.
•Life span is 50 years or more

Snapping turtles are omnivores. They will eat almost
anything they can swallow. They have been known to
eat insects, crayfish, carrion, snakes, lizards, and
other turtles. Algae and plants are also eaten.
As young turtles they get most of their by foraging,
but as they age they will wait for the food to come to
In some parts of the country snappers are hunted for
food in the restaurant trade. This is only regulated in
a few states.
A New York state study discovered that Snapping
turtles were able to survive with incredibly high doses
of toxins in their body fat.
Snappers emit secretions that generate a strong
musk turtle like odor when threatened or aroused.
In Snapping turtles the males are generally larger
than the females. Males also have longer tails.
Eastern Painted Turtle

   Family: Emydidae
Color: Carapace is olive-brown. The edge is marked with red,
 the plastron is yellow, and the head is streaked with yellow.
   The neck, legs, and tail are streaked with red and yellow.

Pattern: The pattern is unique in that the vertebral and costal
 scutes run virtually parallel, so the light bordered seams are
                 aligned across the carapace.

 Size: The size of this turtle varies from 4 1/2 to about 7 in.
    Southeast Canada through New England and down to
Georgia and Eastern Alabama.
:    Plant-filled ponds, lakes and streams, and are often seen
in groups or basking on logs and rocks. Most common where
lily pads and pickerel weed grow

       Insects, snails, vegetation
•Painted turtles usually mate in April or May
•Egg laying occurs in May and June
•About 5-10 eggs are buried, usually close to water
•Eggs usually hatch by September (3 months), but
hatchlings may not leave the nest until the following
•Many, if not most, nests, are quickly discovered and dug
up by raccoons, coyotes, or other predators
Painted turtles are the most abundant turtles in this
area. Although cars/roads do kill many turtles,
the overall population is not highly impacted. As
with any species, if their habitats are destroyed,
turtle populations will be greatly impacted.
Sternotherus odoratus
•Family: Kinosternidae

The skin is a dark-olive to black color,
and there are two prominent yellow
lines that run from the snout to the
neck, one on either side of the eye.

 average length: about 3 to
 5 inches

The carapace is brown or
black, and has a smooth, oval
shape with a high dome.

Musk turtles are poor swimmers and
usually walk along the bottom
•The stinkpot is an abundant
species with a large range
•They prefer Ponds and lakes with
rocky bottoms, and slow-moving
-Feed on small aquatic insects
                                 -Fish Eggs
- Mollusks
                                 -Algae and larger plants
 Red-eared slider
Trachemys scripta
Original range
Eastern Box
Wood turtle; Glyptemys insculpta
 Spotted turtle;
Clemmys guttata
     Bog turtle;
Clemmys muhlenbergii
Close, but not quite….

                            Common map turtle

     Diamondback terrapin
       Spiny softshell turtle
                                Eastern mud turtle

Blanding’s turtle