Diamond-backed Terrapin -Malaclemys terrapin

Malaclemys terrapin

*The colored areas of the map above represent parishes with currently known records for the given species
 (Source: Jeff Boundy, LA Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries). By no means does it represent the full range of the species in the state, nor does it necessarily mean that a species can be found throughout the parish with the record. This is provided as a guide to where you might be able to find these species in the state and to aid in identification. A descriptive explanation of the range of each species can be found in the text below.

Other Common Names:

Subspecies: Only the Mississippi Diamond-backed Terrapin, Malaclemys terrapin pileata, occurs within Louisiana coastal waters.


Similar Species:

Species Range:

Louisiana Range:Coastal Parishes.


Natural History:

Best Time and Place to Observe:

Global Conservation Status: Diamond-backed Terrapins are listed as Near Threatened by theIUCN Red List. Their NatureServe Global Conservation Status Rank is G4 (Apparently Secure).

Federal Conservation Status: None

Louisiana Conservation Status: Diamond-backed Terrapinshave a ranking of S3 (rare and local throughout the state – 21-100 known extant populations) in Louisiana. They are also a ‘restricted harvest’ species in Louisiana, where, with a proper license, Diamond-backed Terrapins may be taken during all months except between April 15 - June 15. They must measure 6 inches or more carapace length to be legally harvested, and may not be taken by a trap of any kind.

*** If you live in the range of this species in Louisiana and believe you may have observed this species please let me know (take a picture if possible), as there may be more unknown populations in the state.***

Author's Remarks:I have observed this species on occasion in St Bernard Parish, and also within Rockefeller State Refuge in Cameron Parish, and other private land in Cameron Parish.

All images on site are sole property of B.M. Glorioso. To use any images on this site please contact me at: gloriosob429@gmail.com 2020