Conservation Status: Protected (FWCA); Endangered (SARA; COSEWIC)
Size: 12 cm (5”)
Defining feature(s): Spotted turtles are small black turtles with several yellow spots on the shell, head and legs. The shell is smooth with smooth margins.
Other features: Plastron may be black or yellow with large black patches. Males have completely black jaws and long claws on the forelimbs while females have yellowish jaws and throats.
Habitat: Spotted turtles prefer bogs, fens and marshes but may also be found in shallow ponds wet meadows and slow moving streams. Cool clear water with a soft mud substrate and emergent vegetation are preferred. This species is known to aestivate during hot summer months.
Reproduction: Courtship and mating occurs in early spring (March or April). This species is very cold tolerant and is known to breed when body temperature is as low as 8oC (Harding, 2006). Nesting occurs in early to mid June. Clutches consist of 2 to 7 eggs, which hatch after 45 to 80 days.