Sternotherus minor minor -- Loggerhead musk
is very similar in apperance to Sternotherus carinatus,
also having the lighter skin colour which is mottled with small
black or brown spots. This species has a very large head and jaw
structure which has evolved to crush snails and molluscs. This
species has barbels on the chin but not on the throat. It also has
a keel running down the center of the carapace, this is not as high
as seen in the carinatus. These along with the other musk species
can release a foul smelling odour, although again, this is rarely
encountered within captive specimens.
The loggerhead musk turtle can be found in the states of Florida, Georgia, Mississipi and Tennessee. As with the majority of musks they are often found in slow moving to still bodies of water, amongst others ditches, creeks, streams, stagnant pools, ponds, water run offs and lakes. They can often be found in heavily vegetated bodies of water, where they are often seen hunting the prey that they specialise in hunting i.e snails and molluscs.
The Loggerhead musk turtle is a small turtle, with an adult specimen normally reaching a maximum of 5 inches shell length. Although as with other musks it has been noted that specimens from different parts of their range do vary somewhat in size, but overall they are still a very small easly housed turtle. The Loggerhead is also another great contender for life in a suitable aquarium or tub if you are able to find them in the UK.
is usually a light beige or brown in colour. The scutes often have
dark brown flecks on them similar to the razorback. As with other
musks the plastron is surfboard shaped (see picture). The plastron
is smaller in size compared to the closely related mud turtles,
thus giving the turtle more manoeuvrability at the expense of
protection. The plastron shows one small weak hinge, which offers
very little protection to the legs and tail. The plastron can range
in colour from a dull pink through to a dark brown.
This species has webbed feet with strong short claws on each toe. They also posses a very strong set of beak like jaws and an unusually large head, used for crushing snails and other molluscs. These turtles pack quite a bite!