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Nauti-Lass Ponds & Critters, Inc. 

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​North American Wood Turtle

Wood turtles use aquatic and terrestrial habitats at different times of the year. They are highly aquatic as hatchlings and while young, but become more land-based as they get older. Mature Wood Turtles frequent swimming areas, but spend most of their time on land. During the summer, the wood turtle is considered a largely terrestrial animal. During the spring, the wood turtle is active during the daytime and will almost always be found within a few hundred yards of a stream. The early morning and late afternoon are preferred foraging periods. Throughout this season, the wood turtle use logs, sandy shores, or banks to bask in sunlight. Wood turtles grow to between 5” and 8” in length, and reach a maximum of about 9.2”. They are one of the few species where the males are larger than the females. Unlike many chelonian species, the Central American wood turtles will eat both on land and in water.

The North American species (Glyptemys insculpta) can be found across the northeastern United States into parts of Canada. They range from Nova Scotia through New England, south into northern Virginia, and west through the Great Lakes region into Minnesota. November through February or March is spent in hibernation at the bottom of a small, flowing river. The wood turtle may hibernate alone or in large groups.

The Central American species (Rhinoclemmys pulcherrima manni) is perhaps the most ornately beautiful of all turtles. These specimens will be covered with swirls of orange and yellow along with black ocelli (eyespots). The Central American Wood Turtle is a tropical species and does not hibernate and therefore, probably not suitable for year-around outdoor ponds in colder climates. Wood turtles are well-tempered and very sociable as well as intelligent. They are extremely personable turtles and can be easily hand-fed.

                                         To read more about or purchase a Wood Turtle, click on one of the turtles below

Wood & Bog Turtles

​Central American Wood Turtle