Eastern Painted Turtle
These beautiful turtles are Connecticut's most numerous turtle species and can also be found from coast to coast through the northern United States and southern Canada, south to the Gulf of Mexico from Louisiana to southwestern Alabama.
Primarily aquatic (live in water), inhabit quiet shallow pools, rivers, lake shores, wet meadows, bogs, and slow-moving streams. They like pools that have suitable basking sites and a soft, muddy bottom.
These small turtles can grow to be 6 – 10 inches long and are thought to live between 20 to 40 years
These omnivores, meaning they eat meat & vegetation, only feed under water on aquatic plants, aquatic insects, crayfish, snails, small fish, tadpoles, and mussels.
They spend the winter hibernating in mud or decayed vegetation on pond bottoms, emerging earlier than other turtles, typically in March. They are commonly seen basking (sunning) on rocks and logs, even on top of one another. Much of their time is spent concealed in submerged vegetation.
If you visit during the summer, please look for ours sunning in the courtyard behind the building then see if you can spot the group of native turtles basking in the marsh, behind the pond.