What can you do to help turtles?
Drive Carefully, it is Turtle Time in Lanark County
Be a good citizen scientist. Report your sightings to the Ontario Reptile and Amphibian Atlas.
The Midland Painted Turtle was recently listed as an at risk species STATUS: SPECIAL CONCERN. According to Ontario Nature: “Reptiles, including painted turtles, account for a large portion of the animals killed on Ontario’s roadways each year. Nesting females are particularly vulnerable to road mortality because they lay their eggs in the soft roadside shoulders. Add to that the historical loss of more than 70 percent of southern Ontario’s wetlands and it is not hard to see why the midland painted turtle is now at risk.”
Of the 8 species of turtle native to Ontario, only 6 species are found in our area of Eastern Ontario, and of these, all are now listed by COSEWIC as at risk species, as are all of Ontario’s turtle species.
Recommended on-line resource for more details and photos for these species: Species Guide – Toronto Zoo
1. Snapping Turtle (Chelydra serpentina): STATUS: SPECIAL CONCERN Click here for more information about the Snapping Turtle
2. Eastern Musk Turtle aka Stinkpot turtle (Sternotherus odorata): STATUS: SPECIAL CONCERN Click here for more information about the Eastern Musk or Stinkpot Turtle
3. Northern Map Turtle (Graptemys geographica): STATUS: SPECIAL CONCERN Click here for more information about the Northern Map Turtle
4. Midland Painted Turtle (Chrysemys picta marginata) Turtle STATUS: SPECIAL CONCERN Click here for more information about the Midland Painted turtle
5. Blanding’s Turtle (Emydoidea blandingii) : STATUS: THREATENED Click here for more information about the Blanding’s Turtle
6. Spotted Turtle (Clemmys guttata) : STATUS: ENDANGERED Click here for more information about the Spotted Turtle