Giant Asian pond turtle
|Giant Asian pond turtle|
|Kaeng Krachan District, Phetchaburi, Thailand|
The Giant Asian pond turtle (Heosemys grandis) inhabits rivers, streams, marshes, and rice paddies from estuarine lowlands to moderate altitudes (up to about 400 m) throughout Cambodia and Vietnam and in parts of Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar and Thailand.
Slight variations in coloration can be seen among the species. The carapace of the Giant Asian pond turtle has a brown to black coloration with a distinct ridge along the center while the plastron is yellow in color. The head is gray to brown in color. 
Habitat and Behavior
Capable of living in water or on land the Giant Asian pond turtle can be located along bodies of water such as lakes, ponds, rivers, streams, and canals. The Giant Asian pond turtle is omnivorous and finds food in both aquatic and terrestrial environments. Their diets consist of worms, larvae, insects, snails, deceased animals, and aquatic and terrestrial plants.Similarly to other species of turtles, the Giant Asian pond turtle has developed adaptations and different techniques for capturing prey in both types of environments.
A large area of concern is from the illegal capture and export of these turtles for use as food and pets in parts of Asia.
Giant Asian pond turtle in Singapore Zoo
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- Giant Asian pond turtle photos and facts. (n.d.). http://www.arkive.org/giant-asian-pond-turtle/heosemys-grandis/
- Lintner M, Weissenbacher A, Heiss E (2012) The Oropharyngeal Morphology in the Semiaquatic Giant Asian Pond Turtle, Heosemys grandis, and Its Evolutionary Implications. PLOS ONE 7(9): e46344. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0046344
- Summers, A. P., Darouian, K. F., Richmond, A. M., & Brainerd, E. L. (1998). Kinematics of aquatic and terrestrial prey capture inTerrapene carolina, with implications for the evolution of feeding in cryptodire turtles. The Journal of Experimental Zoology, 281(4), 280-287. doi:10.1002/(sici)1097-010x(19980701)281:43.0.co;2-k
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- Heosemys grandis Species Description (on Heosemys.org)
- Asian Turtle Conservation Network Page
- Asian Turtle Consortium Page
- London Zoo Page
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