Midland painted turtle in exhibit

Midland Painted Turtle

Scientific Name

Chrysemys picta marginata

Class

Reptilia

Order

Testudines

Range

Southern Canada to northern Mexico

Habitat

Wetlands

Estimated Wild Population

n/a
Midland painted turtle in exhibit
IUCN Conservation Status: Lower Risk - Least Concern IUCN Conservation Status: Lower Risk - Least Concern

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Physical Description

Midland painted turtles were named for the brightly colored markings on their face and limbs. Individual turtles range from three to 10 inches in length and have relatively flat, yellow-and-green shells. They feed primarily on plants and small water animals—such as fish, crustaceans, and insects—by using powerful jaws to grip their food. They often spend winter burrowed in mud at the bottom of a pond, where they enter a state of lowered activity to survive the cold.

Interesting Fact 1

Midland painted turtles are one of the most common turtles in North America.

Interesting Fact 2

The sex of hatchlings is dependent on incubation temperature. Lower temperatures result in male offspring and higher temperatures result in female offspring.

Interesting Fact 3

They can defend themselves from predators by drawing their head and limbs into their shell.

Animal Care staff working with seal

Commitment to Care

Lincoln Park Zoo prioritizes individual well-being over everything else. Guided by scientific research, staff and volunteers work to provide the best welfare outcomes for each individual in the zoo’s care. 

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Asian small-clawed otter in exhibit

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The Wish List is full of one-of-a-kind items for the zoo’s animals, including nutritious snacks and enrichment items to keep them active and healthy.  

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Wildlife face many daunting challenges—some global, like planet-wide climate change, and some that affect individuals, like an animal ingesting plastic—but now is not the time to despair. None of these problems are too big for us to come together and solve.

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