Ornate Box Turtle Fact Sheet

Class: Reptilia
Order: Testudines
Family: Emydidae
Genus: Terrapene
Species: ornata
Life span:

Typically live 30-40+ years

Egg Gestation:

Females lay 3-8 eggs several times a year. Incubation normally lasts 3 months

Number of young at birth: 3-8
Age of maturity: 8-10 years

Males are slightly larger than females. Average shell length is about 2-6 in long


0.5-1.5 lbs

Description: The turtle’s shell does have a fancy look to it.  Each shell segment (scute) has a radiating pattern of yellow lines on a dark brown background.




  • Found exclusively in North America. Occupy the eastern United States ranging from southern Maine to Florida along the East Coast, and west to Michigan, Illinois, eastern Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas.
  • Live in open woodlands, pastures, and marshy meadows
  • Strictly terrestrial turtles
  • Ornate box turtles are omnivores eating snails, insects, berries, fungi, slugs, worms, roots, flowers, fish, frogs, salamanders, snakes, birds, and eggs.