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Caspian Pond Turtles: Mauremys caspica
Category: European Water Turtles
Experience Level: Starter to Intermediate [?]
Caspian Pond Turtles (Mauremys caspica) are found in the middle east in Israel, Saudi Arabia and Iran, north into Eastern Europe, through Turkey, on the islands of Cypress and Crete, into Bulgaria and Yugoslavia. Also called Caspian Turtles, they are found in nearly all fresh and brackish water bodies with in their range.
Caspian Pond Turtles are tan to olive with yellow to creme colored patterning on their shell, arms and head. They love to bask, and are instinctively quick to return to the water if startled. A very personable little turtle (most adults only reach about 7 inches), Caspian Pond Turtles quickly lean to recognize their keepers. They have a very wide ranging diet, and must be in the water in order to eat. Ours readily take turtle pellets, earthworms, cut fish and meat. They also love insects and shrimp, and even pick at some greens.
Wild populations of Caspian Pond Turtles have been declining for decades due to interaction with man. Vultures and storks also take a heavy toll on these turtles - which are finally being protected in some parts of their range. Thanks to a few skillful US breeders, limited numbers of captive born Caspian Pond Turtles are available to keepers - who will enjoy this very versatile and active species.
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