Field Guide to Maryland's Turtles (Order Testudines)
Photo of Wood Turtle courtesy of Linh Phu.
5 1/2 inches – 7 1/2 inches. Record: 8 inches
Takes advantage of both aquatic and terrestrial habitats, but always remains near water. On land, they may be found in a variety of usually forested habitats, but may be found in fields and meadows and wetlands. In aquatic areas, they prefer clear moving streams or rivers with gravel or hard-packed bottoms.
How to Find
Most active in the spring and fall, during its mating seasons. Especially like to bask on logs in streams and rivers with vegetated shorelines, or in woodlands with little cover, following emergence from hibernation.
Photo of Habitat for Wood Turtle
courtesy of Rebecca Chalmers.
Distribution in Maryland
May be found west of the Fall Line through the Piedmont and into Western Maryland; infrequently found in Prince George's and Charles Counties.
- Discover Maryland's Herps
- Maryland Herp History
- Maryland Herp Checklist
- Survey Techniques, Collecting Ethics, Safety and the Law
- Problems with Buying Frogs and Tadpoles for Wild Release
- Technical Guide: A Key to the Reptiles and Amphibians of Maryland - 86.3 MB pdf file
- Maryland Amphibian and Reptile Atlas (MARA) Project
- Natural Heritage Program
- Wildlife & Heritage Home
"A Joint Project of the Natural History Society of Maryland, Inc. and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources"
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The Maryland Herpetology Field Guide is a cooperative effort of the MD Natural Heritage Program and the MD Biological Stream Survey within the Department of Natural Resources and their partners. We wish to thank all who contributed field records, text, and photographs, as well as support throughout its development.