and H.B. Juveniles appear female-like in this regard and at maturity males begin to develop darker features. Baby and young spotted turtles are mostly going to be found in low level water areas. The spotted turtle (Clemmys guttata), the only species of the genus Clemmys, is a small, semi-aquatic turtle that reaches a carapace length of 8–12 cm (3.1–4.7 in)[3] upon adulthood. Fish and Wildlife Service made an initial finding that the turtle may qualify for protections under the Act. With the help of their legs, they dig a pit of 2.5 by 2 inches. The Spotted Turtles are omnivorous. Spotted turtles shed their scutes in small pieces occasionally resulting in completely smooth shelled specimens. [8], Hatchlings resemble the adults closely. Habitat destruction and alteration, collection for the pet trade, and other human impacts such as vehicle mortality (cars and mowers) are leading to declines in populations. The highly fragmented distribution of spotted turtles in Ohio only covers the northern two-thirds of the state. These species achieve sexual maturity between the ages of 7 – 10 years. Spotteds can be found in shallow marshy water areas. You will need the following: • Consider spotted turtle habitat needs when managing Carolina bays and floodplain ecosystems. Muskrats kill many spotted turtles during the winter dormant period. Activity appears to peak during April and May in the northern part of the range. The spotted turtle ranges from southern Maine, Quebec, and Ontario, south along the eastern US to Florida in the east and central Indiana and Ohio in the west. Its legs and tail are black with scattering of y… Spotted turtles spend their lives in marshy meadows, bogs, swamps, ponds, ditches, or other small bodies of still water. They also like to have larvae, worms, spiders, crustaceans, tadpoles & small fishes in their diet. The lower portion is commonly found in pink, yellow or reddish color. [22] Some of the insects commonly found in with the spotted turtle's stomach contents are terrestrial, suggesting the turtle moves onto land to hunt. One study focused specifically on the Southeastern population, and recorded that females had greater shell heights, heavier body masses, and longer plastrons than males. The major predators of the spotted turtle are as follows: These species usually have their mating season in the periods of March and May. Native Habitat Spotted Turtles can be found across the northeastern portion of North America, but they are primarily found in the Great Lakes region of Canada and the United States, as well as along the eastern seaboard. Spot­ted Tur­tles pre­fer shal­low wa­ters with a soft bot­tom sub­strate and some sub­mer­gent and emer­gent veg­e­ta­tion. The spotted turtle has tiny yellow spots on the head, neck, legs, and carapace, with a black background color. The color of the skin of these species varies between grey and Black. Spotted turtles generally require clear, clean water with a soft substrate and aquatic or emergent vegetation (Ernst and Lovich 2009). The adult turtles consist of 100 spots all over their body. Parham. [11] The bottom shell (plastron) is yellow or orange-yellow and a black spot is present on each section (scute); however, with age, melanism of the plastron increases until the entire surface is black. By contrast, sexually mature females possess a flat plastron and have a tail notable shorter and thinner than mature males. Spotted turtles are rare and beautiful reptiles native to eastern North America. In our area, Spotted Turtles are found throughout the Coastal Plain, including several barrier islands, but are found in spotty populations and are generally fairly uncommon. Photo by Mike Jones, MassWildlife. The males bear lesser spots than those on females. Their broad, smooth, low dark-colored upper shell, or carapace, ranges in its exact colour from black to a bluish black with a number of tiny yellow round spots. Additional Information. Alike the body, the head and limps are also adorned with yellow colored marks. In terms of aquatic habitat, spotted turtles can be found in marshes and bogs as well as ponds and shallow water bodies that have an abundant supply of all kinds of aquatic vegetation. Feldman, C.R. Your email address will not be published. These species of the turtle family are easy to pet. They can be spotted fairly well also in parts of Florida and Southern Ontario. These species live for up to 25 – 50 years of age. Habitat Spotted Turtles require clean, shallow bodies of standing or slow-flowing water with muddy or mucky bottoms and aquatic or emergent vegetation. But the older they get the more the spotted will seek land more often. The plastron (underside of shell) is yellow or orange with wide black smudges. 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