Pignosed Turtle

Carettochelys insculpta

About This Animal

SIZE: 21.65 in (55 cm)

RANGE: Southern Papua New Guinea and extreme northeastern Australia

HABITAT: Rivers, lakes, streams and lagoons with soft floors; also found in some brackish water estuaries

DIET: Primarily herbivorous but will also feed on some animal matter

ON EXHIBIT:  Rivers of the World in River Journey

This very bizarre turtle is something of a living fossil. It is the last member of a family that was widespread across the world. It is called the pig-nosed turtle because of its snorkel-shaped snout. It has paddle-shaped front feet much like a sea turtle. The pig-nosed turtle is sometimes called the Fly River turtle.  Pig-nosed turtles take over 20 years to reach maturity.

This turtle is threatened due to the mass harvesting of its eggs and capture for the international pet trade.