Spiny Softshell Turtle
(Apalone spinifera)

The spiny softshell turtle is a very prehistoric looking creature with its flat, leathery shell and  spiny warts on the back. They can grow up to 21 inches in length. These turtles live in still or slow moving muddy water feeding on fish, crayfish, snails, frogs, and other reptiles.

Although they are very timid and quick to dive into the water, like their cousins the snapping turtle, these turtles can be extremely aggressive and dangerous if handled.  Please do not touch or attempt to handle these turtles.  In our area, they are most commonly seen basking on  sandy banks of the Virgin River. Soft-shell turtles are occasionally observed further from water when they are seeking a location to lay their eggs.

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