Eastern Long-Necked Turtle


Chelodina longicollis


This is Mr T who was in care with friends of mine, Len & Christine.
Mr T has sustained shell fractures which had to be repaired resulting in the T you can see at the base of his shell (and hence the name!).
Mr T was released at Fourth Crossing.

other names

Long-Necked Tortoise or Snake-Necked Turtle


Colour is variable, from rich browns to dark brown or black on the top of the shell. The under-shell is white or cream in colour. The extended head and neck usually measure the same as the shell length, sometimes longer. Females can grow up to 26cm in length (shell) and males to 21cm. The genus Chelondina are identified from all other Australian turtles by only four claws on the webbed front feet.

The Long-Necked Turtle can be found down the eastern side of Australia, from Townsville in Queensland into NSW, where it occupies most of the state excluding the north-western corner, most of the Victorian state and across to the south-eastern corner of South Australia, stopping around the Adelaide area. It prefers wet areas including swamps, lakes, billabongs, dams and slow moving rivers and creeks. Extensive overland migrations can occur during the summer months and during the winter months they often hibernate. The turtle feeds on a variety of aquatic organisms including molluscs, crustaceans, tadpoles, small fish and insects and they only eat while underwater. Breeding commences in Spring. The female turtle excavates a hole, often in the banks of a stream or swamp, where it lays the eggs and then partially buries them again, the incubation temperature is around 30 degrees Celsius. Eggs are laid around November and December and clutch size can be between 8 and 25 eggs with the average being around ten. Eggs hatch about 65 days later.

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