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Spotted Turtles - Clemmys guttata

Spotted Turtles - Clemmys guttata
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Aquarium suitability:
Care level:
Experienced Turtle Enthusiasts
High Protein Diet that includes worms, fish, pellets, insects and some plants.
North American
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The Clemmysguttata or the Spotted Turtle is a semiaquatic turtle commonly found in Southern Canada, eastern parts of Great Lakes, Eastern USA and towards the east of the Appalachian Mountains. The Spotted turtles as the name suggests have spots all over their body. They are small turtles with a gray or black carapace and skin, covered with spots. They can grow up to a carapace length of 5 inches. They have a smooth black carapace with no keels or serrations. An interesting fact about these polka dot turtles is that their left carapace has more spots than the right. Yellow, cream or golden spots are splattered all across the head, throatand limbs. Hatchlings and juveniles usually have one spot per scute and as they grow up the density of spots increases. Gradually with age the spots grow lighter and lose their color. Some of the Spotted Turtles have been found without any spot on their carapace but their head and the rest of the body is still spotted. The plastron is usually yellow in Clemmysguttatahatchlings and juveniles but gradually as they mature the melanin concentration increases until the complete plastron turns black. The head is narrow with a notched upper jaw. One both sides of the black head there is an orange spot.

Spotted Turtle Habitat

The Spotted Turtle is found in Southern Maine, Ontario and Quebec in Canada, and Florida, Indiana, and Ohio in eastern US. Isolated populations have also been found in other parts of Canada, Illinois, Georgia, Indiana and North and South Carolina. The Spotted turtle prefers to live in bogs, swamps, marshes, farm ponds, creeks and small streams flowing through woody landscapes. TheClemmysguttata have also been found in brackish streams and lagoons fed from tides. Shallow slow moving streams with a profusion of plants in and around it are the optimum habitat for these turtles. Hatchlings and juveniles prefer the safety of water but as they grow up their preference shifts to land. Hobbyists are advised to design a 60 gallon terrarium i.e. an aquarium with 50% land mass and 50% water. The land mass should be made up of sand, soil, river rocks, small woods, dirt and rocks. You can leave natural or real pieces of drift wood floating in the water. An under water filter an air pump and a submerged water heater should be fitted in the aquarium. The Spotted turtles are avid basker and should be offered a large basking area. A UVB light and a regular heating lamp should be placed over the basking area to keep the temperature between 80-85 degrees Fahrenheit. The optimum habitable water temperature for Clemmysguttata is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

Spotted Turtle Diet The Spotted Turtles are excellent predators. They take cover in aquatic plants and wait for their prey. The Clemmysguttatais an omnivore and consumes aquatic plants, algae, fruits, insects, insect larvae, worms, tadpoles and small fish. In captivity you can also feed them fruits, meat chunks, chicken livers, commercial turtle pellets. It should be kept in mind that the Spotted Turtle only eats underwater. Keepers should give them a weekly or twice-a-week dosage of calcium and vitamin supplements.

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