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The White-lipped Mud Turtle

31 January 2012 No Comment

Today’s Belize Photo of the Day is the White-lipped Mud Turtle which is known scientifically as Kinosternon leucostomum. Pretty and personable, this turtle can be found in quiet waters with soft bottoms in southern Mexico and Central and South America.

The White-lipped Mud Turtle

In Belize, these distinctive turtles can be found countrywide especially in areas near the Maya Mountains.

The apprehensive turtle shown in the photograph above was taken at The Lodge at Chaa Creek, which is located in the verdant foot hills of the Maya Mountains.

A common omnivore, this mud turtle can be observed near quiet streams, rivers and lagoons where it feeds on a great variety of invertebrates, plants, and small fishes.

The best way to distinguish the Kinosternon leucostomum is by its dark carapace with a yellow plastron. Befitting its name, the edges of the jaws are cream and sometimes interrupted by dark smudges and if held in captivity, it can live up to 20 years.

Photo taken by Naturalist Guide: Hilberto Tut


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