Australasian Pig-nose Turtle

The Australasian Pig-nose Turtle, Carettochelys insculpta, is a species of soft-shelled turtle native to freshwater streams, lagoons and rivers of the Northern Territory of Australia and southern New Guinea.

This species is unlike any other species of freshwater turtle in the world. The shell is typically gray in color, with a leathery texture, while the front plate is cream colored. Their feet are actually flippers, resembling those of marine turtles. Its nose looks like that of a pig. Males have a longer tail than females. They can grow to about 22 inches long and weigh up to 50 pounds.

Pig-nose Turtles are omnivorous, eating a wide variety of plant and animal matter, but seem to prefer the fruit and leaves of the fig. The species is entirely aquatic, except when females come onto land to lay their eggs. Little is known about their general behavior, as the species has not been well studied in the wild.

Photo by LA Dawson