Introduction

Clemmys- the Greek word for tortoise.

guttata- the Latin word for "spotted", referring to the yellow spots on the carapace.

The spotted turtle is easily recognized by the distinctive spots of yellow pigment on its dark carapace, head, neck and legs. Unlike other turtle species, the spotted turtle is inactive much of the year, resting in the hottest periods of the summer and in the cold winter.

Spotted turtle populations are declining in many areas because of habitat destruction and collection for the pet trade. The spotted turtle is listed as a vulnerable species by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC).