What kind of box turtle is this?

JenClark74

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My girls rescued this gal as she was just about to be run over by the Gator they were taking a ride on over the weekend. She seems to have some shell damage possibly. Wondering what kind of box turtle she is?

20190904_160027.jpg
 

Chubbs the tegu

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Possibly 3 toed box turtle.. im not a box turtle expert though. Im sure they’ll be here soon
 

Chubbs the tegu

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Sounds like 3 toed to me. Ive never owned box turtles either. You've come to the right place to find info. Lot of knowledgable ppl on here
 

HoosierTort

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I’d return it to where your girls found it. Most states have laws against collecting them.
 

PJay

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A three toed box turtle, Terrapene carolina triunguis. How deep is the damage? Does it look like a puncture through the shell or just a scute lifting up? Is there any other shell damage than the spot visible in the picture?
 

JenClark74

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I’d return it to where your girls found it. Most states have laws against collecting them.

I just checked our state laws, and it's not illegal here. In fact, the three-toed, as it turns out, is Missouri's state reptile! I didn't even know we had one.
 

JenClark74

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A three toed box turtle, Terrapene carolina triunguis. How deep is the damage? Does it look like a puncture through the shell or just a scute lifting up? Is there any other shell damage than the spot visible in the picture?

So on that side, it just looks like a scute lifting up. But on the other side, there is a darkened spot...here's a photo. Not sure what this means?


20190904_211154.jpg
 

HoosierTort

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I just checked our state laws, and it's not illegal here. In fact, the three-toed, as it turns out, is Missouri's state reptile! I didn't even know we had one.

IMG_4499.jpg

Might not be illegal, but the impact could be significant on the wild population in that area. Most adults have a 2-4 acre home range. You are keeping one which might not allow enough overlap of breeding adults, thus hurting the species.
Please return it to the wild.
 

PJay

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So on that side, it just looks like a scute lifting up. But on the other side, there is a darkened spot...here's a photo. Not sure what this means?


View attachment 279998
The two spots of shell damage on opposite sides of the shell are probably from a potential predators teeth. Box turtles are surprisingly tough and resiliant but at the very least I would clean both areas with running water and a toothbrush to remove any dead tissue and dirt. Then liberally apply an antibiotic cream using the toothbrush again to make sure it gets in all the nooks and crannies.
 

JenClark74

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The two spots of shell damage on opposite sides of the shell are probably from a potential predators teeth. Box turtles are surprisingly tough and resiliant but at the very least I would clean both areas with running water and a toothbrush to remove any dead tissue and dirt. Then liberally apply an antibiotic cream using the toothbrush again to make sure it gets in all the nooks and crannies.

Okay, thank you.
 

TechnoCheese

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Also, +1 to putting it back in the wild. Box turtles specifically have something like an internal compass that lets them return to their “home”, or territory. Taking them from the wild keeps them from going back, but they’ll keep trying to escape so that they can. They really don’t adapt well, and it absolutely doesn’t help the native population to take out a future breeder. It would likely better off where you found it. Even with good intentions, taking one from the wild is not rescuing it, and if you see one in danger, just move it to a safe place.
 
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HoosierTort

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Also, +1 to putting it back in the wild. Box turtles specifically have something like an internal compass that lets them return to their “home”, or territory. Taking them from the wild keeps them from going back, but they’ll keep trying to escape so that they can. They really don’t adapt well, and it absolutely doesn’t help the native population to take out a future breeder. It would likely better off where you found it. Even with good intentions, taking one from the wild is not rescuing it, and if you see one in danger, just move it to a safe place.

Most only have a 2-4 acre home range and yes, that internal “home” beacon is strong!!

I’d be happy to set her up with someone who has some captive-bred hatchlings or juveniles!
 

archelon19

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My girls rescued this gal as she was just about to be run over by the Gator they were taking a ride on over the weekend. She seems to have some shell damage possibly. Wondering what kind of box turtle she is?

View attachment 279984
It is a juvenile box turtle ( @ 3 years old)-probably 3-toed or eastern- depending on where it was found. A local wildlife rehabber can assess the damage and provide the proper care so that this young turtle can heal well and be released. Or even an exotic vet can help if a rehabber is not available. They are carnivores (meal, wax, red worms) at this age and need moist surroundings.
 

JenClark74

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Well I definitely don't want her to be miserable, nor cause harm, but we're not going to be back in the area where we got her from any time in the near future. So do you suggest we just release her into another wooded area?

Also, I'm for sure going to have to find a captive-bred boxie, because my girls have grown quite attached to her.
 

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