Connecting people with nature in Ontario's Mississippi Valley

Baby Turtle

Turtle Watch 2008

The goal of the Turtle Watch program is to better map out the distribution of the Blanding’s Turtle and Stinkpot (both of which are threatened) in eastern Ontario. All of the data collected will be shared with the Natural Heritage Information Centre of the Ministry of Natural Resources which tracks rare species.

How to Recognize a Blanding’s Turtle
With bright yellow on the underside of the head and neck, it is difficult to confuse a Blanding’s Turtle with any of the other turtles native to Ontario. In addition, the carapace or upper shell is domed or helmet-shaped, in comparison with the flatter carapace of the Painted Turtle. Adult Blanding’s Turtles are typically 13-20 cm in length. Check out the following website for a photo and more on the Blanding’s Turtle: http://www.carcnet.ca/english/reptiles/species_accounts/turtles/Emydoidea/emydoidea.html

How to Recognize a Stinkpot
The Stinkpot is a small turtle rarely more than 13 cm in length. The top shell is brown or black, often with dark lines and dashes. It is highly arched and commonly covered in algae. Two light stripes are present on each side of the head, one above and one below the eye. Older individuals may have a mottled head pattern instead. Check out the following website for a photo and more on the Stinkpot: http://www.carcnet.ca/english/reptiles/species_accounts/turtles/Sternotherus/sternotherus.html

Submitting Observations
Please submit the date and location of your observations. If you can provide the UTM coordinates from a topographic map (or a GPS) that would be great (e.g. 0446250 4972150, Mapsheet 31B/13). Please also provide a description of the location (e.g. County Road 20, 0.5 km east of County Road 18, Township of North Grenville, Leeds and Grenville County) and the habitat (adjacent to Kemptville Creek). Please submit your observations even if you can’t provide an exact location.

Submit observations to
Please put Turtle Watch in the subject header

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