Studbook & Record
Pelomedusa Species Summary
Pelomedusa s. nigra (Gray, 1863)
Pelomedusa s. olivacea (Schweigger, 1812)
Pelomedusa s. subrufa (Lacepède, 1788)
Africa and Madagascar
Exploits all bodies of water including rivers, lakes, ponds, watering holes, swamps, seasonal wetlands, etc. Pelomedusa will move great
distances over land or estivate during the dry season.
Threats: collection for bush meat and habitat loss (it has been noted by Boycott and Bourquin (2008) that P. subrufa appears to be expanding its
range with the construction of dams and reservoirs)
Quotas: *Export quota totals for specific Pelomedusa subspecies are lacking and to be considered unreliable due to high occurrences of mixed
subspecies groups (olivacea and subrufa) appearing at wholesalers and in retail stores. Pelomedusa s. nigra is nearly non-existent in captive
CITES III - Ghana (removed 2007);
IUNC 2007 Red List: Least Concern
The genus Pelomedusa was recently reclassified as being comprised of a single
species (Boycott and Bourquin, 2008). Previously three subspecies were recognized
and it is strongly encouraged by this studbook that groups continue to be maintained
as distinct subspecies.
Pelomedusa s. subrufa and P.s. olivacea continue to arrive in large numbers
through importers and are distributed by retail pet stores (private and chains). P.s.
nigra are not seen in captivity outside of Africa as a result of export restrictions in
place throughout their natural range.
Husbandry techniques are known for P.s. subrufa and P.s. olivacea, both of which
have successfully reproduced in captivity.