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With their flat disc-like bodies, long necks, pointed tubular snouts and aquatic tendencies; soft-shelled turtles are easily recognizable. Worldwide, these turtles are represented by 15 genera and thirty species. These distinctive turtles have a range that includes North America, Africa, southern and eastern Asia, and the East Indies to New Guinea. Fossil records from the late Jurassic Period provide evidence that soft-shelled turtles once inhabited what is now Europe and South America.
The smooth soft shell turtle (Apalone mutica)
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