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Florida Redbelly Turtle KSC00pp0306.jpg
Pseudemys nelsoni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Subclass: Anapsida
Order: Testudines
Suborder: Cryptodira
Superfamily: Testudinoidea
Family: Emydidae
Genus: Pseudemys[1]
Gray, 1856[1]

See text.

Pseudemys is a genus of large, herbivorous, freshwater turtles of the eastern United States and adjacent northeast Mexico. They are often referred to as cooters, which stems from kuta, the word for turtle in the Bambara and Malinké languages, brought to America by African slaves.[2]


The genus Pseudemys comprises approximately seven species, although the validity of some taxa remains in question. Members of this genus are among the largest of the Emydidae, with carapace lengths reaching 17.3 in (44 cm) and weighing up to 22 lbs (10 kg). All are aquatic, spending the majority of their time in lakes, rivers, and ponds where they can easily be seen basking on rocks and logs in sunny weather.



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Rhodin 2010, pp. 000.101-000.102
  2. ^ "Cooters". Merriam-Webster. Retrieved 2010-08-03. 
  • Rhodin, Anders G.J.; van Dijk, Peter Paul; Inverson, John B.; Shaffer, H. Bradley (2010-12-14). "Turtles of the World 2010 Update: Annotated Checklist of Taxonomy, Synonymy, Distribution and Conservation Status". Archived from the original (pdf) on 2010-12-15. 

External links

  • University of Michigan Animal Diversity Web
  • EMYSystem Genus page
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