The pig-nosed turtle (Carettochelys insculpta), also known as the fly river turtle is the sole surviving member of an ancient and once widespread family, and is unusual in that, with its long, paddle-like forelimbs, it more closely resembles the marine turtles than other freshwater turtle species. A large and heavy-bodied turtle, it is superbly adapted to swimming. In addition to the flipper-like forelimbs, the webbed hind limbs are used for both paddling and steering, while the carapace is quite streamlined, and lacks hard protective scutes, instead being covered with soft, pitted, leathery skin. Perhaps the most unique feature of this species, which leads to its common name, is the elongated, fleshy, pig-like snout, which acts like a snorkel, allowing the turtle to breathe while the rest of the body remains submerged. The body of the pig-nosed turtle is grey, olive-grey or grey-brown above, whitish below, and there is a whitish blotch behind each eye. The male is genrally slightly smaller than the female, with a longer, thicker tail. Juveniles often have a somewhat translucent underside, through which the underlying blood vessels may show, lending it a pinkish colour, and may also bear small light patches on the carapace. The tail bears a single line of scales on the upper surface, and each limb bears two claws. The pig-nosed turtle is perfectly adapted to an aquatic lifestyle, and more closely resembles marine turtles than other freshwater turtle species. The pig-nosed turtle only leaves the water to nest.


  • TBA


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