Western Pond Turtle

(Actinemys marmorata)

Info coming soon.

(This individual was photographed 5/2/2016 in the same immediate location in Rocklin, CA as the North American River Otter photo found in its own post in this blog.)

Males: have a light throat with no markings, a flatter shell, and a concave plastron (the ventral surface of its shell).

Females: have a mottled throat with dark markings, a taller shell, and a flat or convex plastron which tends to be more heavily patterned than the Male's.

Both sexes do not have carapace keel (a dorsal ridge that runs from front to the back of the shell).

Size: 3.5 - 8.5 inches shell length.

Lifespan: Turtles may survive more than 50 years in the wild.

Differs from the Red-Eared Slider Turtle species by:

  • The head and neck of the Western Pond Turtle is mottled, with no red stripe behind the eye.
  • The Western Pond Turtle's marginal scutes 8-12 that make up its shell (the scutes above the tail, or back scutes) are all smooth along the outer edge and do not split (except for cases in which the individual has had past traumatic injuries to the shell). Red-eared sliders have bifid or slightly forked scutes.

Diet consists of
Range is....It may enter brackish water and even seawater.

Breeding Season: April to May.

Breeding Age: 8 to 12 years old.

Clutch Size: 2 to 13 eggs. Some females lay two clutches a year while others lay eggs every other year. Eggs are laid between April and August on land in a nest dug by the female. Females travel during the evening to dig their nest, sometimes as much as 1/2 mile away from and up to 300 ft above the nearest source of water (most nests however are located within 300 ft of the water). The nest is covered with soil and adjacent low vegetation to disguise it from predators. Hatchlings are about 1 inch in shell length while the tail is almost as long as its shell. A majority of the hatchlings overwinter in the nest and first appear in the spring following the year of egg deposition.


  1. "Northern Western Pond Turtle - Actinemys marmorata". Turtles, CaliforniaHerps.com, A Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of California. Retrieved November, 2016.
  2. "Western pond turtle". Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved November, 2016.
  3. "California’s Invaders: Red-Eared Slider (Trachemys scripta elegans)". California Department of Fish & Wildlife, CA.gov. Retrieved November, 2016.