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Chinese Three-striped Box Turtle

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  • English name
    Chinese Three-striped Box Turtle
  • ClassificationChinese Three-striped Box Turtle
  • Scientific nameCuora trifasciata

Chinese Three-striped Box Turtle
Click the image to expand

Chinese Three-striped Box Turtles fetch a high price as an ingredient for Chinese medicine, as food, and as pets. Lots of them have been caught by people and they are now in danger of extinction.

Size & Weight (Adult)

Tortoise Shell: Up to 21cm

(Source: Shinsekai Zetsumetsukiki Doubutsu Zukan* (Library Edition) Gakken) (*Illustrated Encyclopedia of New World Endangered Animals)

Where they live

Chinese Three-striped Box Turtles live near water in Southern China, Vietnam, and Laos.

What they eat

They eat insects, crustaceans (animals like crabs and lobsters) , shellfish, tadpoles, and fish.

What they are like

Chinese Three-striped Box Turtles have a plastron (the hard shell on their stomach) that can bend in the middle like a hinge. They can hold their plastron right against the shell on their back and hide their head and legs.

Find out more about the Chinese Three-striped Box Turtle!

One very expensive turtle!
Chinese Three-striped Box Turtles are known as very expensive animals. They are bought and sold at high prices for use as an ingredient in Chinese medicine, as a high-class food, and as pets. For this reason, many of the turtles have been caught and there are now so few of them that they are almost extinct. Many turtles are protected from their enemies by their hard shells, but if they are captured alive by people, there is nothing they can do.

Some people ignore the rules...
It is now against the law to catch and buy or sell wild Chinese Three-striped Box Turtles. Despite this the rules are often ignored. What’s more, the environment of turtle habitats is getting worse due to development and the use of pesticides. People are making efforts to preserve the turtles, but turtle numbers have not yet recovered. If things keep on going the way they are, Chinese Three-striped Box Turtles might become little more than a memory.


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  • Part4 "Deforestation - building roads destroys animals"
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