Spotted Turtle

By Beth & Patrick

"Berry" Pic courtesy of Beth & Patrick



Clemys guttata


Male  31/2 to 5 inches               Female   31/2 to 5 inches

Maximum recorded length was 5.4 inches


Most spotted turtle hatchings and younger spotteds love to eat worms, baby or small worm like red wigglers, or small night crawlers and pretty much anything offered to them. The older the spotteds get, they will eat about anything from aquatic vegetation like anachris to insects like crickets; all foods are consumed in the water; although, the adult spotteds when finding food like red wiggler or night crawlers will find them on land then drag the food to the water and consume it in the water. During hibernation the spotteds will eat mostly just worms they find in the wild, for example red wigglers. When they come out of hibernation they will eat about anything giving to them, such as crickets, other insects, worms, snails, aquatic plants, crayfish and sometimes algae.


Air Temperature:  Low to mid 80's

Basking Temperature:  95°

Water Temperature:  Low 70's


The spotted turtles are found around shallow low water areas. Spotteds can be found in shallow marshy water areas. Baby and young spotted turtles are mostly going to be found in low level water areas. But the older they get the more the spotted will seek land more often. They will be often found in marshy meadows, bogs, swamps, ponds, ditches, and most they will be around an area with relatively still water.


Spotteds will range from the low Maine area all the way down to mid to central Florida. The states will include: Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, and around the great lakes area.




The spotteds captive habitat is pretty simple. If you want to make it as close to their natures wild life habitat then you will have to have a 50/50 land and water. This will include: drift wood, river rock, slate rock, dirt, and aquatic plants. Spotted Turtles like to bask so there will have to be a basking spot. Also UVB lightning is needed and also a heat light for their basking area. You will not have to have a heater do to the fact that they live in extremely cold water and they will not go into the water if it is too hot, but it depend if you have this turtle out doors in the winter then you might want to have a little heater to have the water at the low 70’s. These turtle aren’t good swimmer so the maximum water depth should not exceed the depth of 6 inch. Substrate should be the following: Sand, dirt, and small to medium rocks.


The recommended size enclosure should be a 55 gallon tank or stock tank. You can easily fit a 3 spotteds in a 55 gallon stock tank or aquarium. The reason for this is that some will be on the land and some will be in the water so they wouldn’t take the space of the other spotteds, but another reason for this is that they are a very small species. This will also give a good amount of water and land for the turtles. The only downside to using sand is that you will have to watch out for sand granules affecting the pump. With spotteds they need water to be still to accommodate their wild life habitats, so just circulate the water with an adequate filter.


In captivity the spotted will consume the same as their diet in the wild. The hatchlings and the younger turtle will eat just about anything you will hand them, so snail, worms (red wigglers) (night Crawlers), crickets, other insects, and aquatic vegetation, veggies, also spotted love Reptomin and Mazuri.


Wood turtle, Bog turtle, other Spotteds.


They aren’t the best of swimmers do to the fact that they have small web feet. They are a smaller and skinnier species of turtles. They love shady areas also to cool down without going into the water all the time.