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Spotted Turtle basic information

The Spotted Turtle gets its name from the yellow spots that cover its carapace. As a young Spotted Turtle, they have one yellow spot per scute. As the Spotted Turtle ages, its spots begin to fade. Sometimes they completely lack spots and the carapace will be completely black. The carapace is generally a dark brown or black color. The carapace of the Spotted Turtle is smooth. The plastron of the Spotted Turtle is yellow or orange in coloring with black splotches that can sometimes cover the entire breadth of the plastron. Growth rings on the plastron can be used to determine the turtles approximate age. Spotted Turtles are relatively small, measuring from 3.5 inches to 5 inches as adults. The head of the turtle is generally black with a yellow splotch on each side and a variable number of spots covering the rest of it. The upper legs and tail are black in coloring with yellow spots and the neck and lower parts of the legs vary in color from orange to pink.

Male and female Spotted Turtles show an extreme amount of sexual dimorphism. The carapace of a male is more compressed and extended, with a concave plastron. His eyes are brown and his chin is tan, brown, or black. His tail is generally longer with his vent placed beyond the edge of the carapace when his tail is extended. The female Spotted Turtle has a rounder and higher carapace as well as a flat plastron. Her eyes are orange and her chin differs from the male's chin in that it is yellow or orange. Her tail is narrow, and with it completely extended, her vent is at or beneath the edge of the carapace. The female Spotted Turtle also tends to average a larger size than a male Spotted Turtle.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Spotted_Turtle".
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