Fun Eastern Mud Turtle Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun Eastern Mud Turtle Facts For Kids

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The Eastern striped mud turtle, belonging from the ponds of Texas and New York, is an ideal pet as it is low maintenance and can be kept inside a terrarium. It is very small and handy, as it grows up to a maximum of 5 in (12.7 cm) and serves as a popular pet. These mud turtles can cost up to $10-$50.10. Although the species are quite a lively species and safe enough to keep as pets they might bite and give an aching pinch with their undulating beaks if they sense danger and are nervous. The female ones of this species usually lay 1-4 eggs that take approximately 3-4 months to hatch.

According to IUCN, they aren't endangered but are at the risk of loss.

If you like what you read, do check out these green sea turtle facts and stinkpot turtle facts.

Fun Eastern Mud Turtle Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Crayfish, mollusks, aquatic insects

What do they eat?


Average litter size?

2-5 eggs

How much do they weigh?

3.1-9.3 oz (88-263 g)

How long are they?

2.4-4 in (7-10.2 cm)

How tall are they?

4.27 in (10.85 cm)

What do they look like?

Yellowish to black

Skin Type

Dry scales

What were their main threats?

Humans, Raccoons, Alligators, Herons, Environmental Calamities

What is their conservation status?

Not listed

Where you'll find them?

Lakes, Swamps, Sandy And Muddy Areas, Clean Oxygenated Water, Spring-fed Streams, Shallow And Sluggish Water Bodies Like Rivers


Oklahoma, United States, Texas, Missouri, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, New York, Kentucky, Illinois, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Indiana, North And South Carolina, New Jersey, And Long Island









Eastern Mud Turtle Interesting Facts

What type of animal is an Eastern mud turtle?

An eastern mud turtle Kinosternon subrubrum is a reptile.  Commonly known as a mud turtle, it is a common species of the turtle family. They are closely related to musk turtles.

What class of animal does an Eastern mud turtle belong to?

Eastern mud turtle Kinosternon subrubrum belongs to the class of reptiles. Two subspecies of mud turtles are found on land- K.s. subrubrum and K.s. Hippocrepis.

How many Eastern mud turtles are there in the world?

Though mud turtles(Kinosternon subrubrum) are found in New York and nearby it, they are the rarest species found in the place. In 1983, they were surveyed in South Carolina and it turned out that around 224 - 556 mud turtles inhabit the area.

Where does an Eastern mud turtle live?

The Eastern mud turtle, Kinosternon subrubrum, lives mostly across Central North America and the United States. Places like Mississippi, Alabama, Missouri, New Jersey, North and South Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Long Island. While living in the above places in the wild, mud turtles are kept in 20-40 gallons tanks and aquariums in houses.

What is an Eastern mud turtle's habitat?

Mud turtles usually dwell in muddy wetlands. They can also be found in freshwater bodies. Since they are reptiles they are also found in rivers, lakes, swamps, sandy dry areas, and muddy regions. Mud turtles can also live in places with vegetation, clean and well-oxygenated water, and streams.

Who do Eastern mud turtles live with?

The Eastern mud turtle, Kinosternon subrubrum, or striped mud turtle species can live in wild waters as well as can be kept as pets. While kept as pets, these mud turtles should be kept with those people who can handle them with care. Mud turtles can be well kept along with fishes in tanks and reservoirs. When living in wild, mud turtles prefer to stay in places where they can easily get their prey. They are found in water bodies that also contain crustaceans, mollusks, and aquatic insects.

How long does an Eastern mud turtle live?

The average lifespan of this species is around 20-50 years. For survival, they need a preferable temperature of around 74-81 degrees F (23.3-27.2 C). They usually bask at a slightly higher temperature of about in the 90s.

How do they reproduce?

The females lay eggs at a frequency of 2-5 at a time. Their usual duration of breeding is between May and July. The males mate with the female ones during the spring months. Usually, eggs of egg-laying animals have this property of absorbing water from the surroundings. Eastern mud turtle is an exception. The eggs are laid inside the mud. The female striped mud turtle digs up a nest before laying eggs. The process starts with the females searching for a preferable site to lay eggs and thus finding one they dig up with the help of their front webbed feet and fully hiding under the soil. Only her head is visible while she covers herself with the dug-up soil covering all over her. Then it lays the eggs inside the nest and protects them. Their eggs do not absorb water from their surroundings. The eggs hatch during late August or September. Young mud turtles are called hatchlings. They almost look similar to the snapping turtles and so people often mistake them. They can be distinguished from the snapping turtles by their plastron and tail. Unlike snapping turtles, mud turtles have a comparatively bigger and hinged plastron and a relatively smaller tail.

What is their conservation status?

Although the eastern mud turtle is Not Listed in the red list of IUCN, the population and diversity suggest that the animal is very much endangered. Due to the lowering of the water tables near New York and water withdrawal from natural aquifers, mud turtles are in grave danger. There is a huge downturn in the population of the species.

Eastern Mud Turtle Fun Facts

What does the Eastern mud turtle look like?

In Carapace length, the average size of an Eastern mud turtle varies between 2.9-4 in (7.6–10.2 cm). Its iris is yellow in color and has inky clouding. The color of the carapace ranges from yellowish to black and is devoid of any kind of pattern. The plastron is at times comprises a dark pattern with the color varying from yellow to brown. The plastrons are mostly big and joined. The legs and tails are gray in color while the chin and throat are usually yellow mixed with a tinge of grayish brown. Eastern mud turtles have got webbed feet.

Eastern Mud Turtle

How cute are they?

Although they look quite friendly it's wrong to assume that this species of turtle is friendly and passive. Most mud turtles bite and can give us a painful pinch with their bent beaks if they sense a threat and hence shouldn't be touched or disturbed. This species is related to musk turtles and often emit a filthy smell to turn off their enemies.

How do they communicate?

A turtle cannot comprehend human language but at times it can recognize or rather get familiar with one's voice tonality and touch. A mud turtle doesn't have vocal cords but can sometimes produce a whining or hissing sound like most other turtles.

How big is an Eastern mud turtle?

Mud turtles are usually small. The carapace, oval in shape and keelless, is about 3-4 in (7.6-10.1 cm) long. Their plastron is bigger and larger than other species but the tail is smaller.

How fast can an Eastern mud turtle move?

Since people mix up turtle and tortoise, it should be made clear that both being reptiles, turtles are faster than tortoises. On average, turtles move at the speed of 3-4 mph (4.8-6.4 kph). They have webbed feet that help them to swim faster than predator reptiles.

How much does an Eastern mud turtle weigh?

This species of turtle generally weighs around 3.1-9.3 oz (88-263 g). The hatchlings weigh about 0.08 - 0.112 oz (2.4 - 3.4 g). When they grow fully into adults, they become heavier.

What are the male and female names of the species?

There is no name for males and females of mud turtles.

What would you call a baby Eastern mud turtle?

When young, baby turtles are called hatchlings.

What do they eat?

Being omnivorous animals, mud turtles hunt and prey on crustaceans like crayfish, mollusks, and insects they find in their living area. Other than these, when kept in tanks and aquariums they feed on seeds of water lily, and black gum.

Are they dangerous?

Mud turtles are docile and calm in nature unless they are provoked to attack. They have quite a sharp beak with which they poke whenever they are disturbed. In the end, it should be made clear that mud turtles aren't poisonous.

Would they make a good pet?

If you know how to handle mud turtles, they can make a great pet. People have kept mud turtles as pets for ages. They are not dangerous which can be seen from the photos.

Did you know...

Unlike other reptiles living in the water, mud turtles are hardly seen to bask.

When mud turtles are kept as pets, they need abundant calcium supplements and Vitamin D3.

Conant and Collins coined the scientific name of the brown animal in 1991.

Some other turtles include the European pond turtle, Mexican mud turtle, and the black-breasted turtle.

How many eggs does a mud turtle lay?

Female mud turtle lays 2-5 eggs at once.

Are Eastern mud turtles endangered?

Though they are not listed under IUCN, we can guess by their population that they are in danger of getting extinct.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these green sea turtle facts and Central American wood turtle facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable eastern mud turtle coloring pages.

Written By
Moumita Dutta

<p>A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.</p>

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