“ Tartaruga-de-barriga-vermelha de pescoço curto (Red-bellied short-necked turtle).

É uma espécie de tartaruga da família Chelidae. Pode ser encontrada na Austrália e Papua-Nova Guiné. Fica a maior parte do tempo em torno de áreas rasas, e áreas de água barrenta (lamacenta).

The Red-bellied short-necked turtle or Jardine River turtle (Emydura subglobosa) is a species of turtle in the Chelidae family. It is found in Australia and Papua New Guinea. It is a endangered species of Australia. Majority of the time it is around shallow, muddy areas of water. Its cranial anatomy, embryogenesis, and skeletogenesis are well known. “



Mata mata - Chelus fimbriatus

The Mata mata, Chelus fimbriatus (Testudines - Chelidae), is indeed one of the most bizarre turtles in the world. Its carapace, head, and limbs are well camouflaged with an appearance similar to leaves and stones. The head, triangular-shaped, has various worm-like fringes, responsible for the specific name fimbriatus, which in Latin means fringed or ornamented turtle. Those integumental processes like tubercles, barbels or fringes, are known to function as sensory structures, and they are also used in crypsis.

As seen in the photos, these turtles have a very long and pointy nose, and very small eyes. The carapace has three longitudinal ridges, and the neck is remarkable by the presence of small spines forming two stripes of lateral projections. They live about 35 years, reaching an average length of 44-50 cm.

The Mata mata is a freshwater, bottom-walker turtle. They rarely bask and spend most of their time under water, with the exception of females hauling out onto land to nest.

Chelus fimbriatus is a South American species (Venezuela, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia, Ecuador and Peru), it also occurs on the island of Trinidad, and has been reportedly introduced into the drainage canals of southeast Florida, though a self-sustaining breeding population has not been confirmed. This introduction may be due to carelesness associated with the pet trade. Possible detrimental effects on Florida’s native habitat have not yet been noted or investigated.

References: [1] - [2] - [3]

Photo credit: [Top: ©Pierson Hill | Locality: Zoo Atlanta, Atlanta, Georgia, US, 2010] - [Middle: ©Kimberly Colette Micallef | Locality: unknown, 2011] - [Bottom: ©Lvulgaris | Locality: Peru, 2012]

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Northern Long-necked Turtle - Chelodina oblonga

Also known as Northern Snake-necked Turtle, Chelodina oblonga (Testudines - Chelidae), formerly named C. rugosa, is a freshwater turtle native to Australia (Northern Territory, Queensland, Western Australia), Indonesia (Papua), and Papua New Guinea (Southern). 

This turtle is striking by its long, thick neck, which reaches more than 75% of the length of the carapace.

Chelodina oblonga is a fast-growing, carnivorous turtle that exhibits a suite of adaptations for life in unpredictable seasonally ephemeral habitats. Most notable are the habit of nesting underwater, and the ability to depress metabolic rate and thus conserve energy reserves during long periods of underground aestivation.

Note: According with the latest publication (June 2014) of the Turtle Taxonomy Working Group of the IUCN, Chelodina rugosa has been synonymized with Chelodina oblonga.

References: [1] - [2] - [3]

Photo credit: ©Stephen Zozaya | Locality: Near southern Arnhem Land, Northern Territory, Australia (2012)

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Saw-shelled Turtle - Myuchelys latisternum

The Saw-shelled Turtle, Myuchelys latisternum (Chelidae), is a river-dwelling turtle endemic to eastern and north-eastern Australia. It has a moderately long neck, shell with a serrated hind edge (except in very old specimens), neck above with conspicuous, sharp-pointed tubercles, and usually two to four small white barbels under the chin.

This species is listed in many guide books and texts as Wollumbinia latisternum, however, the genus Wollumbinia is considered by several authors as a nomen illegitum, since the article in which the description of the genus Wollumbinia was published apparently did not meet the requirements of the current International Code of Zoological Nomenclature. So, the alternate available name, adopted by some authors, is Myuchelys.

References: [1] - [2] - [3]

Photo credit: ©Stewart Macdonald | Locality: Jardine River, Queensland, Australia (2012)

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