Tuesday, November 8, 2016
Meet Chappy, the Black-Breasted Leaf Turtle.
This turtle is easily recognized by its flattened carapace that is distinctively serrated at the front and back, and by the yellow-edged, dark-brown to black plastron for which it earns its common name. There are also three prominent keels protruding down the length of the carapace, which varies considerably in colour from orange-yellow or tan to a rich chestnut or mahogany brown, to a rather drab olive. The olive to dark brown head is characterised by faint yellow markings near the eye and along the neck, and additional pale-coloured speckling may appear on the sides of the head and jaws. The rest of the skin is greyish brown, often dappled with tan, olive or orange coloring.
Perhaps one of the most striking and conspicuous features of this unusual turtle, however, are the large and protuberant eyes with white irises, that give an alert expression.
Posted by Henry H. Turtle