Chicken Turtle Care Sheet

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Our Turtle & Tortoise Care Sheets are meant as a general guideline to caring for your Turtle/Tortoise. Every specific species requires its own unique care - while many species are overlapping and can be kept with other species that have similar needs. For even more details about the needs of a specific species or for ideas about which different species will go well together (many do), please contact us. Thank you!


Florida Chicken Turtle 
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Chicken turtles are loved by those who keep them. Their alert yet inquisitive nature, beautiful reticulated shells, and vertically striped rumps are some of their endearing qualities.


TChicken turtles are found from Virginia south to Florida and west to Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas.


Adult female chicken turtles can attain 9-10 inches (25 cm). Mature males are slightly smaller.


Chicken turtles are found in still waterways in nature. Ponds, lakes, and swamps. Their enclosure should be very similar to that described for Sliders, but we place a rock or piece of driftwood at the outlet for the filter to keep the water from being dropped too aggressively back into the enclosure. We also add some oak leaves and a few extra live plants to give these secretive babies some extra hiding spots. Adding an extra basking spot or two is also recommended.






  • Wikipedia – Chicken Turtles
  • Ernst, C.H., J. Lovich, and R. W. Barbour. 1994. Turtles of the United States and Canada. Smithsonian Institution Press.
  • Gurley, R. 2003. Keeping and Breeding Freshwater Turtles. Living Art publishing. Ada, Oklahoma.
  • Gurley, R. 2005. Turtles in Captivity. ECO Herpetological Publishing and Distribution. Lansing, Michigan.
  • Pritchard, P. 1979. Encyclopedia of Turtles. TFH, Inc. Neptune, New Jersey.
  • Vosjoli, P. de and R. Klingenberg. 1995. The Box Turtle Manual. Advanced Vivarium Systems, USA.