Skip Navigation

Go
Species Search:
FieldGuidesthreatened and/or endangered search resultsthreatened and/or endangered

previous  | next

Common Musk Turtle Sternotherus odoratus

 

enlarge +

Common Musk Turtle
credit: Dawson

All Images

 

Get Our Newsletters

 

Advanced Search

Alternate name: Stinkpot

Family: Kinosternidae, Musk and Mud Turtles view all from this family



Description 2 stripes on head, short tail. Smooth caprice with 3 unserrated keels. Dark streaks/spots on keels of Juveniles. Small plastron with a hinge and 11 scutes. Males have a blunt horn on end of tail, scales on inner hind legs.


Dimensions 7.6-13.7cm. (3-5 3/8")


Warning When picked up, Common Musk Turtles often secrete a malodorous musk. Males are aggressive and bite readily.


Breeding February-June. Underwater. 1-9 thick-shelled eggs. Nest built under a rotting log. Hatches after 9-12 week.


Habitat Freshwater. Slow-moving shallow water.


Range Ontario through Maine, Florida, Texas and Wisconsin


Discussion Releases foul musky odor to avoid predation. Has a long neck, jaw can stretch to hind legs. Mostly aquatic, rarely leave water, except to bask in the sun on trees occasionally. Lives up to 55 years in captivity.


 

 

 

2007 eNature.com