Up to 5 - 6"
the wild, they are carnivores, feeding upon
aquatic insects, crawdads or any other animal matter they can find.
75° - 83°
Basking Temperature: Mid 80's to low 90's
Mid to High 70's
Inhabits slow moving
rivers, swamps and oxbows of large rivers.
in Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas, east Texas, and SE Oklahoma.
Being more aquatic than the closely
related mud turtles, razorback musk prefer a greater sized water area. Razorback
musk are well able to thrive in deep water habitat. Though infrequent baskers,
ample opportunity to do so is important. A spotlight over their basking area
will be utilized. This area can be in the form of a rock projecting from the
water, or in the case of young specimens, floating aquatic plants are preferred.
Razorbacks are more shy by nature than other species of musk turtles, and a
substrate of river pebbles seems to give them a greater sense of security.
A thirty gallon aquaria is sufficient for
razorbacks. The addition of more than a single specimen would require the keeper
to adjust the enclosure size accordingly. As always, when possible, more room is
always better. These are active turtles, and they will utilize the space
offered. Strong filtration is advised, as these are messy feeders, and water
quality is often compromised if filtration is not adequate. The addition of
rocks and aquatic plants are advised owing to this species shy nature, and the
greater sense of security that these provide. This especially true of young
specimens. Given the southern distribution of this species, they are less likely
to be as cold tolerant as the stinkpot.
Does well on high
quality turtle pellets such as
Reptomin, as well as
earth worms, crawdads and feeder fish on occasion.
Given ample space, razorbacks do very well
in community settings. Painted turtles, sliders, and cooters are good choices as
tank mates. Razorbacks are well able to live in the deeper water that these
basking species require, and usually coexist peacefully provided the size
difference of the inhabitants is not pronounced. Caution is advised when
maintaining any musk turtles together with their own kind or closely related
species. Aggression between rival males, or with unreceptive females often
results. As with mud turtles, these situations should be monitored closely.
Razorback's are the largest of the musk turtles.
Perhaps the shyest of the musk turtles. Not inclined to bite. Like all musk
turtles, they are infrequent baskers.