Scientific Name: Terrapene carolina
Native Habitat: United States and Canada
Lifespan: 30-40 years
Size: Up to 7"
Temperament: Shy and docile
Ease of handling: Like most turtles, box turtles don't enjoy being handled
Skill level: Intermediate, due to their enclosure requirements
Activity level: Diurnal, somewhat active.
An adult box turtle should be a minimum of 4x4x2' with a water area deep enough to fully submerge itself. The water must have a filtration system and be cleaned regularly.
Temperature: Basking spot should be around 29-33°C, with the cool end between 21-27°C. Nighttime temperatures can be as low as 18°C.
Lighting: 12 hours of UVB is required daily
Substrate: Bioactive soil, coconut husk, coconut fiber, organic topsoil, plenty of leaf litter.
Box turtles do best when their enclosures mimic their natural habitat, with an area to swim and deep substrate to burrow. They also require a large enough hide for them to fit inside and be able to turn around in.
Fresh vegetables, leafy greens, fruits, insects, low-fat meats, and pinky mice can be fed. Commercial pellet turtle food can be fed, but it should not be the bulk of their diet. Avoid iceberg lettuce as it provides little-to-no nutrition.
A foster-based rescue in Southern Ontario