BIG BEND SLIDER (Trachemys gaigeae), (HARTWEG, 1939)

IDENTIFICATION: 4.7-8.6 Inches (12-22 cm). This medium sized turtle bears a brown to olive colored carapace with several curved orange lines occasionally forming ocelli. the plastron is yellow with longitudinal dark markings in the center. A central keel is often present on the carapace. However, this feature disappears with age. The posterior marginal scutes are serrated. The flesh is olive green with lime green, yellow and orange colored stripes. An orange to yellow oval bordered in black is located behind each eye. A smaller and similarly colored spot is present between the oval and the eye.

 

HABITAT: In Texas, the Big Bend Slider lives in the Rio Grande and associated waterways along the southern boundaries of Hudspeth, Presidio, Brewster and Terrell counties.