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Podocnemis unifilis.jpg
Podocnemis unifilis,
yellow-spotted river turtle
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Testudines
Suborder: Pleurodira
Family: Podocnemididae
Genus: Podocnemis
Wagler, 1830

6 species, see text

Podocnemis is a genus of aquatic turtles, commonly known as South American river turtles, in the family Podocnemididae. The genus consists of six extant species occurring in tropical South America.[1] Three additional species are only known from fossils.


These six species are extant.[1]

Nota bene: A binomial authority in parentheses indicates that the species was originally described in a genus other than Podocnemis.

Fossil species[edit]

The following three species are extinct:

Cast of the skull of the extinct species P. bassleri (AMNH 1662)


  1. ^ a b Podocnemis. The Reptile Database. www.reptile-database.org.
  2. ^ a b Wood RC (1997). "Turtles". In: Kay RF, Madden RH, Cifelli RL, Flynn JJ (editors). Vertebrate Paleontology in the Neotropics. The Miocene Fauna of La Venta, Colombia. Washington, District of Columbia: Smithsonian Institution Press.

Further reading[edit]

  • Boulenger GA (1889). Catalogue of the Chelonians, Rhynchocephalians, and Crocodiles in the British Museum (Natural History). New Edition. London: Trustees of the British Museum (Natural History). (Taylor and Francis, printers). x + 311 pp. + Plates I-III. (Genus Podocnemis, pp. 200-201, Figures 50-51).
  • Goin CJ, Goin OB, Zug GR (1978). Introduction to Herpetology, Third Edition. San Francisco: W.H. Freeman and Company. xi + 378 pp. ISBN 0-7167-0020-4. (Podocnemis, pp. 149, 271-272).
  • Wagler J (1830). Natürliches System der AMPHIBIEN, mit vorangehender Classification der SÄUGTHIERE und VÖGEL. Ein Beitrag zur vergleichenden Zoologie. Munich, Stuttgart and Tübingen: J.G. Cotta. vi + 354 pp. + one plate. (Podocnemis, new genus, p. 135). (in German and Latin).