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The chicken turtle, Deirochelys reticularia (Family Emydidae), is a semi-aquatic turtle inhabiting temporary and permanent freshwater and adjacent terrestrial habitats throughout much of the Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plains of the USA. Three subspecies are recognized: D. r. reticularia, D. r. chrysea, and D. r. miaria. Local population sizes are generally small; as such, chicken turtles are seldom the dominant species of turtle at any site. The species differs from most other North American turtles in having a nesting season that extends from fall to spring, followed by a long incubation period. Threats to this species come from the disruption, destruction, or isolation of freshwater wetlands, including small or temporary ones, and the elimination or alteration of surrounding terrestrial habitats. The species is not currently considered globally endangered, though some peripheral populations (e.g., those in Missouri and Virginia) are listed as locally endangered.


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© IUCN/SSC Tortoise and Freshwater Turtle Specialist Group

Source: IUCN SSC Tortoise and Freshwater Turtle Specialist Group

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