Language English Photo: Biodôme Photo: Biodôme Photo: Biodôme OngletsDescriptionDistinguishing featuresThis turtle has a flattened oval carapace varying in colour from brown to greenish grey. There are dark spots on its yellow plastron. It has one or two barbels on its chin. The young have yellow spots on their heads. Only the males retain these spots as they age. ReproductionThese turtles mate from January to March, depending on where they live. The eggs are laid mostly at night, in different types of soil, sometimes quite far from water (up to 100 m away). The female digs a shallow hole in which she lays 22 to 28 eggs, covering them with about 12 cm of soil. DietYellow spotted Amazon turtles eat mostly grass, thin branches, fruit (especially during the rainy season) and sometimes fish. PredatorsHumans catch them for food and for sale to pet stores. Jaguars eat the eggs and young. Caimans may eat the young. HabitatThey live in tropical forests in northern South America, in Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru and Bolivia. They are found in fresh water, in large rivers, flooded plains and large ponds. Ecology, behaviourThe temperature at which the eggs are incubated determines the turtles' sex, with higher temperatures producing females. If the nests that are most often disturbed by predators are located in sunny, and therefore warmer, locations, there may be an imbalance between the sexes. In fact, nests that produce females are attacked more frequently than those containing males. French namePodocnémide de Cayenne Scientific namePodocnemis unifilisPhylumChordataClassReptiliaOrderTestudines (Chelonia)FamilyPodocnemididaeSizeAverage length of male: 33.5 cm; average length of female: 46.5 cmWeight3.5 kg for a length of 33.5 cmLife span23 yearsStatusThreatened (IUCN). Protected species (CITES, Appendix II).