They can be distinguished from other turtle species by their carapace. Of all the turtles I do find dead on the highway, my heart always aches a little more when I find a dead softshell. It is commercially harvested for food in some areas. The Florida softshell will readily migrate over land to nearby wetter areas if their wetland dries. It is commercially harvested for food in some areas. They're hoping to catch as many as 40 soft-shell turtles on their trot lines - the maximum allowed under a Florida interim rule that took effect last week - to sell to a market in nearby Lakeport. Checklist of Florida Turtles--Click on thumbnails for a larger view-- Apalone ferox (SCHNEIDER 1783), Florida Softshell; [NON-NATIVE in Florida Keys] Apalone mutica (LE SUEUR 1827), Smooth Softshell Apalone mutica calvata (WEBB 1959), Gulf Coast Smooth Softshell Apalone spinifera (LE SUEUR 1827), Spiny Softshell Apalone spinifera aspera (AGASSIZ 1857), Gulf Coast Spiny Softshell; [NON …

The main threats are habitat destruction, water pollution and overhunting -- softshell turtles are edible and sometimes heavily exploited. Florida Softshell Turtles are very graceful swimmers; Identification. Florida softshell turtles are subject to harvest regulations in states where they occur, but are not yet considered to be endangered or threatened on any Federal or State list. As adults they do not have many natural predators, but it is their eggs and young that are at highest risk. The U.S. government has proposed adding four types of freshwater turtles to an international endangered species list, in part to better monitor exports of the species, whose meat is … Tortoises and freshwater turtles bear the tragic distinction of being the world’s most endangered clade, with more than half of the species threatened with extinction. They are a Species of Concern in South Carolina. These species are the Florida softshell turtle (Apalone ferox), smooth softshell turtle (Apalone mutica) and spiny softshell turtle (Apalone spinifera). Laws regarding turtles are very different from state to state, while every state agrees on some aspects, like the fact that owning endangered turtles is illegal, a lot of states have a lot of laws regarding native turtles, but very few about non-native turtles, and as a result things can get a little complicated if you don’t understand them properly. The IUCN 3.1 has categorized them under the ‘LC’ (Least Concern) species list. Taking turtles with bucket traps, snares, or shooting with firearms is prohibited.

They are dark brown to olive green in color and Florida Softshell Turtles have a leathery flat carapace and a cream-colored underside. They have ended up on the endangered species list for this reason. Where it lives: They can be found in a lot of slow moving or still body water, but in general they seem to prefer lakes. The Florida softshell turtle is not a threatened species. Although populations within the United States are considered stable, the spiny softshell turtle has recently been listed as an endangered species in Canada. A few species also appear for sale as pets, although they are not the easiest of animals to maintain. The various species have been exploited for their meat throughout their extensive range. Conservation Several species of softshell turtle are endangered, for example Cantor’s giant softshell (Pelochelys cantorii), and others are vulnerable. The spiny softshell turtle is one of the largest freshwater turtle species in North America. Habitat destruction and pollution not only impact the turtles … I have saved many from sure death on U.S. Highway 27 at Lake Jackson over the last few years. In addition, collecting of freshwater turtle eggs is prohibited. Unfortunately for the turtles, this can end in peril. How big it can get: Florida Softshell turtles are average sized, in general they reach sizes between 10 and 12 inches. They are heavily harvested in certain areas for their meat. Possession limits for the following turtle species and their eggs are as follows: Loggerhead musk turtles - two; Box turtles - two Softshell turtles may not be taken from the wild from May 1 to July 31. This is not good news in conservation terms for the species. Although populations within the United States are considered stable, the spiny softshell turtle has recently been listed as an endangered species in Canada. Unlike most other turtles, their shell is soft, flat, and rubbery.