Diamondback Terrapin

The diamondback terrapin is the only species of turtle in North America that spends its life in brackish water.  The excess salt it consumes with its diet is excreted through special glands near its eye.

The species was near extinction in the early 1900s due to over-hunting.  Seaside development has led to a loss of nesting beaches.  They are protected in several states and are considered a species of concern in Louisiana.

North America

At A Glance

Habitat

Brackish water in lagoons, tidal flats, marshes and estuaries

Diet

Snails, Shellfish, Crustaceans, Fish, Insects and Carrion

Location

Eastern and southern coast of the U.S.