What did I find in my backyard?

maggie3fan

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Eastern Box! Nice size.

The heat and humidity this time of year makes them seem very gregarious - they're really just trying to get on with their day. lol
No...:)...it's a Terrapine o. ornata...this is Eastern, brown not naavy blue and grey...

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Jon G.

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I lived in Colorado for over 50 years and became familiar with the ornate box turtles. Red eyes, orange and yellow scales on forelimbs and striking large olive green head is common for the males. I Googled desert box turtles (Terrapene ornata luteola) and found these images. Some desert box turtle images look very similar to the ornata ornata specimens I observed in Colorado. Some variations of the desert box turtle do show more light lines on the carapace. One range map below shows the range for the ornate box turtle with an area of west Texas that may have natural integrades with the desert box turtle. Another range map below shows the range of all North American box turtle species. My conclusion, in agreement with most posts in this thread is that it is likely a terapene ornata ornata.

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Jon G.

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Gulf Coast, FL
One more interesting factoid for box turtle enthusiasts. I now live in Florida and having seen a few wild speciments have learned that the Florida box turtle (terrapene carolina bauri), actually a subspecies of the eastern box turtle (t. carolina carolina), look very similar to the western or ornate box turtle, and not very much like what you normally think an eastern box turtle looks like. The Florida box turtles are typically larger and have a more round and higher domed carapace but otherwise close to ornates....

FLORIDA BOX TURTLE:
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maggie3fan

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One more interesting factoid for box turtle enthusiasts. I now live in Florida and having seen a few wild speciments have learned that the Florida box turtle (terrapene carolina bauri), actually a subspecies of the eastern box turtle (t. carolina carolina), look very similar to the western or ornate box turtle, and not very much like what you normally think an eastern box turtle looks like. The Florida box turtles are typically larger and have a more round and higher domed carapace but otherwise close to ornates....

FLORIDA BOX TURTLE:
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Interesting! He looks dry as heck...lol...I so enjoy my box turtles...
 
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