Pignosed Turtle

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

The pig-nosed turtle (also known as the Fly River turtle) is a living fossil as it is the sole living member of a family of turtles that was once more widespread.  Found only in Australia and New Guinea, the pig-nosed turtle has paddles instead of feet on its front legs (like a sea turtle) and a snorkel-shaped snout that gives rise to its common name.

This turtle is classified as threatened due to the overharvesting of its eggs by humans and collection for the pet trade.