Chinese Soft-shelled Turtle
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The Chinese Soft Shelled Turtle (Pelodiscus sinensis), formerly known as Trionyx sinensis, was described by Wiegmann in 1835.
There is a subspecies japonicus which is sometimes erroneously listed as Pelodiscus japonica.
The Chinese soft-shelled turtle can reach a carapace length of 1 foot (30.3 cm). It has webbed feet for swimming.
It forages at night, taking crustaceans, molluscs, insects, fish, and amphibians.
With its long snout and tubelike nostrils, the Chinese soft-shelled turtle can "snorkel" in shallow water. When resting, it lies at the bottom, buried in sand or mud, lifting its head to breathe or snatch at prey.
The Chinese soft-shelled turtle is found in China, Taiwan, Korea, Manchuria, North Vietnam and Japan. It is difficult to determine its native range due to the long tradition of use as a food and "tonic" and subsequent spread by migrating people. The Chinese soft-shelled turtle has been introduced to Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Timor, Batan Islands, Guam, some of the Hawaiian Islands and California.
17 to 28 eggs are laid per clutch, two to four times a year.
The Chinese Soft-shelled Turtle (Pelodiscus sinensis) is the turtle species raised on China's turtle farms. According to the data obtained from 684 Chinese turtle farms, they sold over 91 million turtles of this species every year; considering that these farms represented less than half of the 1,499 registered turtle farms in China, the nationwide total could be over twice as high.
These turtles can be injured if they are dropped or hit, and are susceptible to shell fungus.
Turtles as human food
Turtle soup is made from this species.
- ^ UniProt Taxonomy - Trionyx sinensis
- ^ Louis A. Somma. 2009. Pelodiscus sinensis. USGS Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL.  Revision Date: 6/29/2004 Accessed: 15/05/2009
- ^ C.H. Ernst, R.G.M. Altenburg & R.W. Barbour - Turtles of the World - Pelodiscus sinensis 
- ^ Brock, V. E. 1947. The establishment of Trionyx sinensis in Hawaii. Copeia 1947(2):142
- ^ Shi, Haitao; Parham, James F; Fan, Zhiyong; Hong, Meiling; Yin, Feng (2008-01-01), "Evidence for the massive scale of turtle farming in China", Oryx (Cambridge University Press) 42: 147–150, doi:10.1017/S0030605308000562, http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayFulltext?type=1&fid=1738732&jid=ORX&volumeId=42&issueId=01&aid=1738724, retrieved 2009-12-26