Introduction

Terrapene - derived from the North American Algonquin Indian work for turtle

carolina - named for the Carolina region of North America

There two races of box turtles, but only the eastern box turtle (Terrapene carolina carolina) occurs in Canada. Although it is the most terrestrial Canadian turtle, the Eastern box turtle often soaks in mud or water for a few hours a day. Though there are few modern records of this turtle, excavations of Indian sites in southwestern Ontario have revealed shells of the box turtle (used to make ceremonial rattles), suggesting its presence in pre-European times. However, the shells may have been acquired through trade from more southerly Indian tribes.