These small, dark semi-aquatic turtles can be identified by the striking yellow spots scattered on their shell. At the Seneca Park Zoo, there are seven spotted turtles on exhibit in the E.C.O. Center. Spotted turtles are closely related to the bog turtle.
Status in the Wild
International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List status: Endangered. These turtles are native to New York State and the Midwest. In these areas, fragmentation and loss of wetland habitats has resulted in the population decline of the spotted turtle. The loss of this animal is also attributed to them being used in the pet trade industry.
Spotted turtles inhabit shallow, well-vegetated wetlands in the Eastern Seaboard and the Great Lakes region in the United States and prefer stagnant water in small lakes, swamps, ponds, bogs and ditches.
Spotted turtles are omnivores. They eat algae, water lily seeds, worms, slugs, grass, mollusks and amphibian eggs.