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Eastern Musk Turtle   

Sternotherus odoratus

Commonly Confused Native Species:


  • Often Not Confused with other Species



Size:                  A small sized turtle measuring 2.5 to 5.5 inches in length



Color:                Musk turtles have a domed brownish-black carapace.

                           The plastron is a pale yellow in color and reduced in

                           size.  The head has two yellow lines below each eye that

                           run down the neck.                


Behavior:         Musk turtles spend the majority of their time in the water,

                           where their cryptic color and behavior often conceals their

                           presence.  Females come into terrestrial habitats to lay

                           eggs in late May and June.       


Habitat:             The musk turtle can be found across the state in

                           streams, rivers, ponds and lakes.    



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