Turtles in Colorado

Colorado is covered in deserts and other arid areas. This isn’t ideal for most turtles, but some have adapted to the state’s climate. These include the Western Painted Turtle, the Yellow Mud Turtle, and the Ornate Box Turtle.

Turtles in Colorado (CO)

Types of Turtles Found in Colorado

Snapping Turtles (Chelydridae)

  • Common Snapping Turtle

Emydid Turtles (Emydidae)

Painted Turtles

  • Western Painted Turtle

Map Turtles

  • Mississippi Map Turtle
  • Northern False Map Turtle

Box Turtle

  • Afghan Tortoise
  • Desert Box Turtle
  • Ornate Box Turtle
  • Plains Box Turtle
  • Three-toed Box Turtle


  • Red-eared Slider
  • Yellow-bellied Slider

Mud and Musk Turtles (Kinosternidae)

  • Yellow Mud Turtle

Softshell Turtles (Trionychidae)

  • Midland Smooth Softshell
  • Northern Spiny Softshell


Are there any endangered turtles in Colorado?

While the Yellow Mud Turtle is quite common in most US states, its population in Colorado is at risk as its numbers have declined. There are several reasons behind this, including habitat loss and disease.

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