Northern Snake-necked Turtle

Northern Snake-necked Turtle
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  • Item #: NSNT

Scientific Name: Macrochelodina rugosa

Identification:The carapace is typically brown and somewhat elongated. The posterior edge of the carapace is most often smooth but can sometimes be slightly serrated. The underside of the carapacial rim is light brown to yellow.  Both the plastron and the bridges are yellow and can sometimes have dark seams. The neck is thick and very long (more than 75% of the length of the carapace) and is covered with a variety of tubercles along its length. The head and neck are usually gray, brown or olive in color with the underside usually being a lighter variant of the top and can sometimes be white.


Range: Has a broad distribution in tropical northern Australia and southern New Guinea.

Diet: In the wild, this species is exclusively carnivorous and feeds on a range of fast-moving aquatic invertebrates, tadpoles, and fish. Macrochelodina rugosa tends to hide under and between rocks and logs where possible or buries itself in the mud to act as an ambush predator to prey. In captivity, commercial foods on the market are availabe, such as Mazuri Aquatic Turtle Diet, AquaMax 500 and ReptoMin. Live should should be provided routinely for feeding such as prawns and fish. bloodworms, blackworms, earthworms, snails, crickets and other insects.

Macrochelodina rugosa’s habit of nesting underwater makes it unique among all turtles. Nesting commences in the wet season (February) and is mostly complete by July (mid-dry season). Eggs are laid in holes dug in mud under shallow water in the littoral zone of flooded waterholes. Embryonic development remains arrested while the nest remains flooded, but recommences when floodwaters recede and the ground dries. Embryonic development proceeds during the dry season and hatchling emergence coincides with the heavy rainfall or flooding in the following wet season.

Accomplished swimmers even as fresh hatchlings, Macrochelodina rugosa enjoy deep water habitats.

The Northern Snake-necked Turtle is a much sort after food source by the local Aboriginal people. Turtles are collected each year in a harvest that has occurred for many millennia.

Price $99.00
Availability Out-of-Stock

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