Razor-backed Musk Turtle - Sternotherus carinatus

Razor-backed Musk Turtle

*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: No subspecies recognized.


Similar Species: 

Species Range: 

Louisiana Range:  Statewide, but records are lacking from the southernmost parishes and a group of contiguous northern parishes.


Natural History: 

Best Time and Place to Observe:

Global Conservation Status:  Razor-backed Musk Turtles are listed as Least Concern by the IUCN Red List. Their NatureServe Global Conservation Status Rank is G5 (Secure).

Federal Conservation Status:  None

Louisiana Conservation Status:  Razor-backed Musk Turtles have a ranking of S4 (apparently secure in Louisiana with many occurrences - 100 to 1000 known extant populations) in Louisiana.

Author's Remarks: I have only observed/trapped this species in six locations in Louisiana, Natchitoches Parish in Kisatchie National Forest, the Atchafalaya Basin, an urban pond in Lafayette Parish, at Sam Houston Jones State Park in Calcasieu Parish, along a bayou in St. Tammany Parish, and in a creek in Beauregard Parish.

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