The blanding’s turtle has an elongated and
highly domed carapace, that is usually black with specks of yellow. Carapace length ranges from 6 to 10 inches. This species has a hinge that allows the plastron
to fold up towards the carapace, especially the front portion.
These features often cause this turtle to be mistaken for a box turtle.
The head is dark brown to black, and is complemented by a brilliant yellow
chin, which is unlike that of the many other Wisconsin
turtles. Blanding’s turtles are found throughout most
of Wisconsin, generally in shallow marshy habitats with
abundant submerged vegetation. These semi-aquatic turtles eat crayfish, snails,
tadpoles, fish, insects, worms, grasses, and berries.
The blanding’s turtle is listed as threatened and as a species of greatest conservation
need in Wisconsin.