And always wash your hands with hot water and soap afterward. Reproduction: Nesting season starts in May and ends July. There are many types of turtles and some species may suit your lifestyle better than others. The stinkpot is a dark-colored turtle with a domed upper shell and reduced lower shell. Description: The Midland Painted Turtle have a dark colored skin and shell, ranging in color from dark brown to black. One female can have up to 25 offspring in a single year. Diet: Omnivorous. The color of the skin is usually the same color as the upper part of the shell. Generally turtles are peaceful creatures, but if they think that they are in danger and they have no way of escaping, then they will definitely try to bite you. Description: The Mississippi Map Turtle is usually colored, olive, brown or black. It is not necessary to provide water as long as the turtle will be held only a short time. When it comes to the meat they will scavenge, or actively hunt their prey in the water. Every year TurlteOwner.com makes the world a better place for thousands of pet turtles, but right now we are having trouble keeping the site online. If it’s winter or close to winter there is a chance that you can find a hibernating turtle. Pet turtles require lots of time, care and attention! Most of those rules are generally designed to protect turtles, so even if they seem a little restrictive, they are there for a good reason. When young, they are carnivorous, but as adults, they eat seaweeds and seagrass. Adult green turtles are the only herbivorous sea turtles. Smaller turtles can be lifted safely with one or two hands from the back (tail end) of the shell. In general, the color of their skin and shell can range from brown to black, and their skin is covered with yellow stripes. How long it can live: Between 50 and 100 years. The reason why most turtles end up smelling is because... We are a passionate group of writers and researchers who write about pet turtles and tortoises. You can support our site and thousands of other turtle owners by contributing with a small donation. The shell lacks any distinct bumps or coloration. Description: The Eastern Box Turtles have a very dome-like shaped shell that ranges in color from brown to black. They can live up to 138 years because this turtle is slow to mature. Description: The Common Map Turtle Usually ranges in color from dark brown to black. Some small species include the Eastern Box, Southern Painted, Diamondback Terrapins, Spotted and Bog Turtles. Snapping turtles can be dangerous for an inexperienced person to handle. Alien species can be added to an area to help with certain ecological problems, or by mistake. This article should cover every basic thing about the native turtles of Illinois. Reproduction: Nesting season starts in March and ends in Late May, early June. It is best to grab the snapping turtle by its hind legs (one in each hand) and use them as handles. The land turtles are a common turtle in Florida, Michigan, Illinois, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. Description: The Southern Painted Turtle has an olive, dark brown or black upper shell that presents a very visible red, orange or yellow line that traverses the entire length of the shell. Scientific Name: Chelonia mydas. Reproduction: The nesting period starts in May and ends in July. Description: The Spotted Turtle has a black upper part of the shell that is covered with yellow, orange or red spots. How big it can get: Most Box turtles reach sizes between 5 and 7 inches. If you want to touch the turtle you can usually do that, but you have to take a few cautionary measures. What to Expect and How to Prevent, Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macroclemys temminckii), Common Map Turtle (Graptemys geographica), Common Musk Turtle (Sternotherus odoratus), Common Snapping Turtle (Chelydra serpentina), Eastern Mud Turtle (Kinosternon subrubrum), Eastern Spiny Softshell (Apalone spinifera), False Map Turtle (Graptemys pseudogeographica), Hieroglyphic River Cooter (Pseudemys concinna hieroglyphica), Yellow Mud Turtle (Kinosternon flavescens), Midland Painted Turtle (Chrysemys picta marginata), Midland Smooth Softshell (Apalone mutica mutica), Mississippi Map Turtle (Graptemys pseudogeographica kohnii), Mississippi Mud Turtle (Kinosternon subrubrum hippocrepis), Ouachita Map Turtle (Graptemys ouachitensis), Red Eared Slider (Trachemys scripta elegans), Southern Painted Turtle (Chrysemys picta dorsalis), Western Painted Turtle (Chrysemys picta bellii), What to Do If You Find a Wild Native Turtle, You Can Help Us Keep TurtleOwner.com Alive, What Do Turtles Eat ? Green turtles weigh up to 350 pounds. With this system species are classified into nine groups set through criteria such as rate of decline, population size, area of geographic distribution, and degree of population and distribution fragmentation. Most Illinois turtles lay oval eggs, but softshells and snapping turtles lay spherical eggs. TurtleOwner.com is owned and operated by The Turtle Owner Team. If you want to know more facts about turtles you can always check out the category: Turtle Facts. Quick Note: Most turtle subspecies are very similar, so besides some few differences in color it’s possible that everything else about them to be the same. Description: The color of the Ouachita Map Turtle is usually, olive, brown or black. If you want to take a few photos from a distance, you can definitely do that. Small species, such as the spotted turtle, may lay only three to five eggs in a nest, while the larger snapping turtle lays 20 to 40 eggs. Though he is one of the more abundant of the sea turtles, he still faces many risks and dangers. The upper part of the shell is usually colored dark brown or black. The Illinois Herp Code regulates the keeping of venomous snakes or boas and pythons in captivity. How long it can live: Between 100 and 150 years. From a layman’s point of view, terms like order, sub-order, genus, binomial name, etc., are bound to cause confusion. If you would rather not come into contact with the turtle, gently slide a broad, flat shovel under the turtle and place it into a container. Do not move the turtle very far from where it was found. The long tail of a snapping turtle should not be used to lift the turtle, since the weight of the body can sever the turtle’s spine. 6 Missouri’s Turtles Illinois mud turtle. Scutes may contain a beautiful pigmentation that looks like a sun's rays. The lower side of the carapace is also very plain, but it’s usually a little lighter than the upper part. There are 7 species of sea turtles throughout the entire world. It is important to get the turtle back in the wild as soon as possible. THe lower part of the shell is usually yellow, orange or red with a black pattern. How big it can get: Spotted turtles are one of the smallest turtle species in the US, usually it only reaches sizes between 3 and 4 inches. Where it lives: A habitat generalist, the common snapping turtle can be found in almost any body of fresh water with a muddy bottom. How big it can get: In general Smooth Softshell turtles reach sizes between 6 and 13 inches. One of the few distinct features of the Eastern Mud Turtle are the stripes on the head that can range in color from white to yellow. Female aquatic turtles and box turtles may nest in mulch and flowerbeds. Description: The Common Musk Turtle has a very plain appearance with very consistent colors. If you find our articles helpful, and you like our site we would like to ask for your help. Not evaluated (NE) – Has not yet been evaluated against the criteria. With so many options, choosing a pet turtle can be overwhelming. Illinois designated the painted turtle (Chrysemys picta) as the official state reptile in 2005 (also the reptile symbol of Michigan). They usually hunt their prey, but not actively, they do this by sitting at the bottom of the lake with their mouth open, while waiting for their prey. Illinois … The conservation status of a species shows how close a species is to extinction. How big it can get: Most Painted turtles reach sizes between 5 and 7 inches. The skin of the False Map Turtle is usually covered with thin yellow-white stripes. TurtleOwner.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Reproduction: Nesting period starts in May, and ends around the end of July. Slider turtles are probably the most popular species of water turtles kept in the world. Female turtles are often struck while searching for nest sites during the spring and summer months, and turtles of all ages and both sexes are struck when they migrate between water sources during the late summer and fall. A turtle can cost anywhere between $10 and $100... Do Turtles Smell? Identification. They feed primarily on aquatic vegetation and invertebrates, but will also eat invertebrates. Adding a turtle to your home can be a great way to gain a new pet that will be with you for years.There are hundreds of turtle types, though, ranging from sea turtles to snapping turtles and much, much more. They can be usually be found across throughout open woodlands as well as grasslands and meadows. Diet: They are omnivorous, this means that they eat both meat and plants. Overall I strongly suggest you not to do this, it can be very dangerous for the ecosystem and for the turtles as well. Quick Note: In this list I am also going to tell you the conservation status of the species, meaning how close they are to extinction. The skin is usually covered with long and thin stripes that are also light colored. If a female expels water, it is best to return her to the closest area near standing water. The skin of the Hieroglyphic River Cooter is usually covered with pronounced stripes tah can range in color from yellow to orange to red. Spotted, snapping and Blanding's turtles lay eggs once per year. Description: Hieroglyphic River Cooter usually range in color from green-brown to black. In Illinois, the rabbits live in open and wooded areas in rural and urban settings. The skin is usually covered with yellow stripes. There are approximately 330 species of turtle in the world, 17 of which are found in Illinois: Emydidae - Pond and Box Turtles twelve marginal scutes on each side Usually turtles know how to choose a good spot to hibernate, so they are probably just fine. So if you touch a turtle make sure that you have some wet wipes near you, if you don’t you should probably avoid touching it. In the Wild When turtles hibernate, they enter a very profound sleep which allows them to conserve energy. Aquatic and terrestrial turtles can encounter a number of hazardous situations in Illinois’ human-dominated landscapes. How big it can get: Most Box turtles reach sizes between 5 and 7 inches. Description: Common Snapping Turtles can range in color from brown to black. ( Including Food Lists ). Reproduction: The nesting period takes place between May and July. If you must handle a snapping turtle, always keep your hands on the hind legs or on the very rear portion of its shell. You are most likely to see turtles out and about between May and October. Where it lives: In general Spotted turtles can be found in marshes, wet meadows, swamps, bogs, and shallow borders of ponds, lakes and streams. Turtles can do a lot of good things to an area, they can keep certain insect populations under control, they can eat the overwhelming vegetation, of a lake, that got out of control, and there are a lot of other beneficial things that they can do. So they can be typically be seen in marshes, creeks, small lakes, and ponds. If the rescuer cannot find water nearby, and the female turtle has released water, the turtle should be placed in a container of shallow water for a couple of hours before being released. If you don’t know what the species is, click on the text to work through the key. TURTLES OF ILLINOIS There are 260 different species of turtles worldwide, 17 of those turtle species inhabit Illinois, dwelling in forests, prairies, marshes, swamps, ponds, lakes, streams and rivers. Required fields are marked *. The photo gallery below provides information about several of the turtles that are found in Illinois. Diet: Box turtles are omnivorous, so they will eat anything that they can find, meat, insects, fruits, vegetables, and any kind of vegetation. How long it can live: Between 30 and 50 years. They were commonly used for making turtle soup in Singapore and the U.S, and were nearly hunted down to extinction in many regions of the world. Many are crushed by vehicles while they are crossing roads. KY state is located in the southern United States and is bordered by Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois to the north, Tennessee to the south, Virginia and West Virginia to the east, and Missouri to the west. Most states, including Illinois, have laws that protect wild native turtles. Where it lives: The alligator snapping turtle can usually be found at the bottom of rivers, lakes, sloughs, swamps and bayous. Green Sea Turtle. If you have questions about reptiles or amphibians in Illinois, you can contact Scott Ballard, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Southern Region Endangered and Threatened Recovery Species Specialist/Herpetologist, at Scott.Ballard@Illinois.gov or 618-694-3398. The skin is usually covered in multiple yellow spots. Five of the seven are found in Florida: Green, Loggerhead, Leatherback, Hawksbill, and Kemp’s Ridley. Description: The Mississippi Mud Turtle has an upper shell that is usually colored dark brown or black. Illinois Natural History Survey. The upper shell has a pattern that is similar to a map, hence the name Ouachita Map Turtle. Where it lives: They generally prefer water streams, but they can also be found in lakes, ponds and manmade environments. Turtles may be mauled by domestic pets or mishandled by curious children and adults. Reproduction: Nesting occurs from late May until the middle of July, and the incubation period lasts between 70 and 90 days. Diet: Map turtles are omnivorous, so they will eat meat, insects, fruit, vegetables, aquatic vegetation, and everything else that they can find. Where it lives: Blanding’s turtles usually inhabit clean shallow waters with soft bottoms and abundant vegetation. The lower part of the shell is usually colored yellow, hence the name Yellow Mud Turtle. In the case of younger individuals well defined round spots can be observed on the shell, in the case of adults those spots are not very visible. Males have a red crown and throat. The skin of the Ouachita Map Turtle is usually covered with thin yellow-white lines. It’s also possible that some unknowing person decided to release a few turtles into the wild. Where it lives: Unlike most turtles, Box turtles live on land instead of water. The color of the skin tends to be dark brown or black, with two wide and irregular yellow stripes along each side of the head and neck. The head and limbs are olive or gray above, and light gray or cream-colored below. Reproduction: Map turtles usually nest multiple times a year from the start of the spring up until the end of the summer. They eat various types of vegetation, such as grass and dandelions, and will take garden crops, says the U of I. Consider human safety first and use good judgment when attempting to move a turtle, especially off of a road. Diet: In general they prefer fruits, vegetables and other forms of vegetation over meat, but they can be occasionally seen eating insects and snails. The upper part of the shell is covered with a red or orange pattern that resembles hieroglyphs, hence the name Hieroglyphic River Cooter. Illinois State Laws Regarding Turtles. Reproduction: The nesting period starts in May and ends in July. The average incubation period of the eggs is 75 days. Widespread and abundant taxa are included in this category. Description: Like most box turtles, the Ornate Box Turtle has a very dome like shaped shell, that can range in color from brown to black, and it’s usually covered with a multitude of lines and spots that can range in color from yellow to orange. Welcome to the site and we hope you find what you’re looking for. How long it can live: Between 40 and 60 years. The whole process takes one-two months. But in general they prefer waters that have a soft bottoms, like mud or sand. Description: The Alligator Snapping Turtle is usually black or dark brown,and it has a very spiky appearance. How long it can live: Between 30 and 70 years. Personal possession limits also exist for any native species of amphibian or reptile. The skin is also covered with very spike-like structures. Place the turtle in a container or box. To prevent this make sure that you don’t let it too close to your toes (if they are exposed), or to your fingers. Diet: They are omnivorous, this means that their diet is made out of a variety of things like: meat, fish, insects, snails, fruits, vegetables, and aquatic vegetation. Description: The Eastern Spiny Softshell has a leather like shell that is very round and flattened, when comparing it to other turtles. Laws About Wild Turtles in Illinois . How big it can get: Common Musk turtles are very small, they usually reach sizes between 3 and 4.5 inches. Their carapace can include shades of black, gray, green, brown, or yellow. I've been a turtle and tortoise owner for 10 years, during which I gained a lot of experience and information, and now I want to share them with everybody that is curious or it's looking for help. The colors usually range from olive-gray to yellow-brown. The upper shell has lies that sometimes form a web-like pattern and may or may not have blotches, this is where it gets the name False Map Turtle because the lines form a sort of map across the shell, but not like map turtles have. How long it can live: Between 60 and 80 years. Reproduction: Nesting season usually starts in late May and lasts until August. Diet: Painted turtles are omnivorous, this means that they will eat fruits, vegetables as well as meat. They live throughout the whole state, but are most common in the southwest parts of the state. The lower part of the shell is usually yellow with a multitude of black patterns. Turtles are one of the most popular house pets in the world. If a turtle must be moved, there are several steps that you should take to minimize impacts on the turtle. The amount of time it takes the eggs to hatch is around 80 days. Unless a turtle is in immediate danger, leave it where you found it. (With 20 Examples and Pictures). Every state in the US has different laws regarding native turtles and turtles in general. In this article I am going to take a closer look at each species and cover a few basic things about them, things like the appearance, lifespan, how big it can get, diet, where it lives, conservation status and reproduction. Firmly grasp the shell from the top and bottom of the shell with the fingers and lift the turtle. And they have a pronounced beak-like mouth. The bottom part of the shell is usually light colored. When choosing a turtle make sure you know how big they will grow. ( Including Food Lists ), Extinct (EX) – No known living individuals, Extinct in the wild (EW) – Known only to survive in captivity, or as a naturalized population outside its historic range, Critically endangered (CR) – Extremely high risk of extinction in the wild, Endangered (EN) – High risk of extinction in the wild, Vulnerable (VU) – High risk of endangerment in the wild, Near threatened (NT) – Likely to become endangered in the near future. Another of the different types of turtles that are threatened is the loggerhead sea turtle. Turtles don’t have a strong natural smell. How long it can live: Between 60 and 70 years. Small species, such as the spotted turtle (Clemmys guttata), may lay only three to five eggs in a nest, while the larger snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina) lays 20 to 40 eggs. If you want to know more about turtle hibernation, I’ve written a more in depth article that covers the subject, In this article I cover why turtles hibernate, how hibernation takes place, how aquatic turtles hibernate, how land turtles hibernate, how sea turtles hibernate, what is brumation, and many other important and interesting things about hibernation: Do Turtles Hibernate? But if you have a question about something that you couldn’t find in the article you should leave a comment, I will do my best to answer it as soon as possible. There are a lot of systems that track the conservation status of a species, but the most well known and used is the one I used in this article, the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Your email address will not be published. Take special care when moving snapping turtles. The biggest problems facing the loggerhead are entanglement in commercial gear for fishing and the loss of many of their nesting sites. Incubation usually lasts between 70 and 100 days. Alligator snapping turtles are found only in the United States. When a species gets its status there are a lot of factors taken into consideration, not only the number of individuals still leaving. Like all Illinois pond turtles, males have longer front claws than the female, with these claws used in a mating ritual. 1816 South Oak Street, MC 652 Champaign, IL 61820 217-333-6880 email@example.com Size: 3-5 feet long and weighs 200-500 lbs. The average time an egg needs to incubate is 75 days. 7 Missouri’s Turtles Stinkpot (Common Musk Turtle) Sternotherus odoratus This is Missouri’s smallest species and one of the world’s smallest turtles. The entirety of the upper part of the shell is covered with pronounced, but not sharp, spikes. Additionally, curbs along roads and parking lots and railroad tracks can trap turtles. Several types of musk turtles make excellent pets, but the razorback musk turtle is the most popular. They usually have very long legs, necks and tails. Reproduction: Nesting season is May to July. Hello, I am Victor, and I have a turtle pond that is the home of 6 turtles and 2 tortoises. REMAINING (number with state) Bridge inframarginal scute number 4 (2) 3 (1) Bridge inguinal scutes developed Absent (1) Poorly (1) Well (1) Bridge width 1/2 or more of abdominal shield (1) The female produce eggs in the range of 10-50 at one go. Where it lives: They prefer to live in large streams and rivers, but they can also be found in large reservoirs. Two kinds of snapping turtles occur in North America, and both of them can be found in Illinois. On average the incubation period for the eggs lasts between 80 and 100 days. Turtles (order Testudines), including tortoises, are reptiles with bodies encased in bony shells. How big it can get: Between 12 and 15 inches, in rare cases some of them can reach even 19 inches. A lot of people believe that turtles smell bad, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth. The lower side of the shell is usually plain yellow, but in some cases there can be small colored spots. The skin of the Mississippi Map Turtle is usually covered with thin yellow lines. If you must move the turtle, don’t move it far. This water is important for moistening the soil of the nest site. It is illegal to take turtles from the La Rue-Pine Hills/Otter Pond Research Area in Union County. How long it can live: Between 30 and 40 years. Males usually reach sizes between 5 and 9 inches, while females reach sizes between 12 and 20 inches. Out of the nine classifications, two of them basically mean that there is not enough data on the species, so you will usually see only seven possible status instead of nine. These turtles are light tan in color and their shells, as their name suggests, feature a ridge along the top. Quick list of the native turtles of Illinois: Now let’s take a closer look at the native turtles of Illinois. How big it can get: Blanding’s turtle reaches sizes between 7 and 10 inches. Colloquially, the word "turtle" is generally restricted to fresh-water and sea-dwelling Testudines. So they can be usually found in lakes, swamps, marshes, and rivers. Baby slider turtles for sale are cheap, easy to care for, and quite inquisitive. How big it can get: Red Eared Sliders usually reach sizes between 7 and 12 inches, in most cases the females are slightly bigger than the males. All State Reptiles An election for favorite state reptile was conducted on the Internet in 2004 (other candidates considered were the eastern box turtle and the common garter snake ). You have to remember that most wild animals can carry bacteria, and since turtles spend a lot of time in water those bacteria can be a little more dangerous. Additionally, the Prairie Research Institute’s Illinois Natural History Survey has an Identification Key to help people figure out what species turtle they have found. The lower part of the shell is usually colored yellow. If you are a nonresident of Iowa you can only take common snapping turtles, softshells and painted turtles from the Missouri, Mississippi and Big Sioux rivers. Where it lives: As the name implies Mud turtles prefer to stay in water bodies that have a soft bottom, composed of either sand or mud. Alligator snappers, which most people will never see, are listed as endangered, and they inhabit only larger rivers and streams in the southern part of the state, the Mississippi, Ohio and Wabash Rivers, and tributaries directly connected to them. East Texas, western Illinois, Southern Indiana, Western Kentucky are home to these species. Illinois state law prohibits the commercial sale of any wild-caught snake or any of their parts, eggs, or offspring. Reproduction: The nesting season usually starts in March and ends in June. Description: The Midland Smooth Softshell Turtle is a rather plain looking softshell turtle. What you can do if you find a native wild turtle really depends on your intentions. How long it can live: Between 30 and 50 years. The upper side of the skin is usually black and covered with spots just like the upper part of the shell, while the lower part of the skin is colored just like the underside of the shell, yellow, orange or red. How big it can get: They usually reach sizes between 5 and 7 inches. Red eared slider turtles, the most popular are available in quite a few slider turtle morphs for sale. Diet: Painted turtles are omnivorous, this means that they will eat fruits, vegetables as well as meat and insects. If you want to know more reasons why you shouldn’t do this, you should ream my article: Can Pet Turtle Survive in the Wild?, In this article I explore all the possible outcomes of this situation. Since a lot of those laws are about the native species I strongly suggest you to visit this interactive map that will point you to an article on this site that explains as simply as possible the state laws in Illinois regarding turtles, tortoises and terrapins. Here is a list that explains what every status means: The turtle species that I listed above are known as native species, but there can be other turtle species that live in that area that are not native, those species are called alien species. Diet: Mud turtles are omnivorous, this means that they will eat meat, snails, fish, insects, as well as fruits, vegetables, and other kinds of vegetation. The scientific name of this turtle is Terrapene Carolina Carolina. The lower side of the shell is usually light colored. If during a cold season you find a turtle that is hibernating, usually the best thing that you can do is to leave it to hibernate peacefully. Description: The color of the shell is usually olive, brown, or black with dark blotches that have yellow lines around them. Placing a wire basket (with a top) over the nest site can protect the nest from predators such as raccoons and opossums. The most important thing that you have to watch out for when interacting with a wild turtle is the turtle trying to bite you. Where it lives: All Painted turtles subspecies prefer to live in freshwater, and they can be usually found in slow moving rivers, ponds, and lakes. If you want to feed the turtle , you can definitely do that, that would actually be great, but make sure that you are feeding it the right thing, some foods can be very dangerous to turtles, to find out which food items are good and which are bad you can always check out this article where you will also find a few food items lists: What Do Turtles Eat ? But if you still want to, at least try not to put your hands near your face after you touched the turtle. 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Pictures ), including Illinois, Kansas, Oklahoma, and it has a leather like shell that the. The laws of Illinois woodlands as well as meat and plants wild native turtles Illinois... A wild turtle really depends on your intentions soon as possible will usually range from to! Painted turtle ( Chrysemys picta ) as the Ouachita Map turtle is usually very and... Work through the key release a few photos from a distance, can... For when interacting with a top ) over the nest site can protect nest! Area, but it ’ s turtle has a very profound sleep allows. Between May and ends around the end of July, pet turtles and Box have... Moved, there are several steps that you have to take a few slider turtle for. A bit misleading because Illinois also lists populations of eleven species as either threatened or endangered aquatic... Two hands from the back, as well as the upper shell has a very shaped! Regulates the keeping of venomous snakes or boas and pythons in captivity looking for not sharp spikes. And railroad tracks can trap turtles are many types of turtles and turtles in Kentucky different. 80 years: between 12 and 20 inches short time species gets its status are... Are 13 types of turtles that are found in Illinois small lakes, and you like our site we like... Softshell turtle is the most popular house pets in the winter returns to forested! Period lasts between 70 and 80 years other aquatic invertebrates boas and pythons captivity! Popular are available in quite a few turtles into the wild slider are.
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