Found a lost turtle...can someone identify him? - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-08-2004, 05:11 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
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Question Found a lost turtle...can somebody help me identify him?

I found him walking across the road this morning, but there is no woods near where he was...there is some way down at the end of the street, but I dont think he could've gotton all the way up here by himself. I'll describe him::

*shell is about 5 to 6 inches long(not including head or tail)
*mostly black, with bright orangish-yellow spots
*has no markings other than the spots...nothing on his ears or anything
*on the under side of his legs it is reddish-orange
*his belly is splotchy with black and yellowish-peachish-red
*his head is flat on top, and his nose is somewhat pointy
*he has a medium length tail, that is black, with reddish-orange on the underside

He seems kinda old, because his shell is kinda peeling/flakey, and he has a lot of lines on his shell(the lines which identify the age), but I havent counted them, I'm not exactly sure how to count them(which ones exactly to count). He seems very tame, doesnt bite or really even hide when I pick him up. I think someone might've dropped him off. He has very pretty eyes(which that doesnt matter, I know), and his face reminds me of a dog somewhat. He seems healthy, he is moving fine, has clear eyes, and is eating. I'll try to get a picture of him. If there is something I missed, please feel free to ask about it

Last edited by Sigaru; 06-08-2004 at 05:17 PM.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-08-2004, 05:24 PM
 
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I will leave this to our turtle experts. They should be along shortly. Turtles can move quickly and a long ways if they put their mind to it. He may have come from the forested area. Pictures would be helpful in identifying him. He sounds like a handsome one.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-08-2004, 05:32 PM
 
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It sounds like you found a Spotted Turtle (Clemmys guttata) (as you assumed in the other post).

What state are you in? Most states that have them in the wild have strict laws against keeping them since they are a species of very special concern in their native habitats.

Are there any waterways by you? swamps, ponds, lakes, ditches etc? Spotties like very shallow water (no more than a foot deep) and usually hang out in the marshy areas that surround ponds etc....

They are not good swimmers so do not put him in anything deeper than 12 inches...

He'll enjoy red worms and meal worms among other lil critters and fishies for food...

When you rub your finger across his plastron (belly) does it feel like there is a great big dent? If so then you probably have a male. If it's not dented in then you may just have a female....
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-08-2004, 08:42 PM Thread Starter
 
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LizGirl--yes, he is very good looking, altho I think he is kinda old. He was sorta comming out of our next door neighbors driveway, but their house is burnt down and under construction..I'm positive its not theirs. I'm absolutely positive.

PicOlio--I am in Massachusettes. there is a pond/swamp way down at the end of my street, but it is next to the highway, and I dont think that is a safe place for him. I have never seen this kind of turtle around here at all either. I've actually barely seen any turtles, altho there was a few. And I have him in only a few inches of water, because I wasnt too sure if he was ok in water or not when I found him.

Thank you for your replies! (altho I'm not positive if its a spotted...someone told me he may be a painted.)
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-08-2004, 09:54 PM
 
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Spotteds are only active about three months out of the year and they certainly can travel
Is there any way for you to post a picture?
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-08-2004, 10:15 PM
 
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It sounds like a spotted turtle to me. They occur naturally up the Eastern seaboard so this species fits geographically as well.

Spotteds are active for most of the warm months but their breeding season is between March and May ... If you had a late spring it is possible this little guy is still looking for a mate.

It is best if you leave it alone. Spotteds are considered protected in Massachusetts.

I'd put it back right where you found it. Most wild turtles have a specific geographical area that they stick to for their entire lives. They have a very low mortality rate if they are relocated from this area.
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