Juvenile and Adult

  • Bright red and yellow markings on the head, neck, legs, and tail, set against a dark background
  • Upper section of shell (carapace) an olive-black colour
  • Lower section of shell (plastron) with bright yellow, red, cream and/or tan markings

Total length: up to 25 cm


  • Primarily in Milk River basin of southern Alberta
  • Introduced to areas well outside of its natural known range

The western painted turtle is the only native representative of the Family Emydidae in Alberta. Any sighting should be studied carefully to ensure it is not a red-eared slider (Trachemys scripta), a non-native turtle. Red-eared sliders look similar to painted turtle in form and size but have a prominent broad reddish stripe behind each eye.


Learn more about the Western Painted Turtle

Not what you're looking for?

  Step back     Start over