Emydidae Turtle Spotted turtle

Florida Redbelly Turtle KSC00pp0306.jpg
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Testudines
Suborder: Cryptodira
Superfamily: Testudinoidea
Family: Emydidae
Subfamily: Deirochelyinae
Genus: Pseudemys
Gray, 1856[1]

Pseudemys is a genus of large, herbivorous, freshwater turtles of the eastern United States and adjacent northeast Mexico. They are often referred to as cooters, which stems from kuta, the word for turtle in the Bambara and Malinké languages, brought to America by enslaved people from Africa.[2]


The genus Pseudemys comprises approximately seven species, although the validity of some taxa remains in question. Members of this genus are among the largest of the Emydidae, capable of attaining carapace lengths of over 20.0 in (50.8 cm) and capable of weighing up to 35 lbs (15.876 kg), although most individuals are far smaller. All are aquatic, spending the majority of their time in lakes, rivers, and ponds where they can easily be seen basking on rocks and logs in sunny weather.



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Rhodin 2010, pp. 000.101-000.102
  2. ^ "Cooters". Merriam-Webster. Archived from the original on 2011-07-14. Retrieved 2010-08-03.