Help to identify a turtle

BoxTurtleFan

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Dec 6, 2019
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NY
Hello all, can you help me identify this turtle? I am fairly certain it is a box turtle but the flat shell confuses me. Thank you!

Turtle image.JPG
 

Maro2Bear

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It sure does look like a Box Turtle, but a very flattened one at that. Coloration and face look boxie. How about the plastron? Maybe a few more pix would help too.

How about number of toes front and back?

Interesting!
 

Yvonne G

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If you were anywhere closer to western U.S. I'd say it was Actinemys marmorata. Definitely a water turtle, not a box turtle.
 

Markw84

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That is a Western Pond Turtle as @Yvonne G stated. Have no idea how you got it in New York, as they are not easy to come by and illegal to own in their native California, but I think they are really great turtles. They used to be in the same genus as NA Wood turtles, spotted turtles and the bog turtle, but more recently given their own genus designation. They are someways quite similar to the wood turtles, but much more aquatic. Although they can and do spend extended periods on land looking to move to a different pond, or aestivate and brumate, they prefer to be in an aquatic environment. They sometimes will rush out of water to take an invertebrate to eat, but drag it back into water to be able to swallow it.
 

Markw84

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So, how did this “Western Pond Turtle” wind up in New York? Enquiring minds want to know!
I too would be interested in how you acquired this turtle. They are completely legal to own and sell in other states. It is California that bans keeping, hatching, selling of native species, and this is our only true native water turtle. I have seen them for sale as hatchlings occasionally online for a pretty nice sum as they are quite rare it seems in the turtle community outside of California. So one in a collection outside of California is definitely worth taking great care of!
 

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