The Roti Island snake-necked turtle is classified as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The collection for food and pet trade, habitat destruction and climate change play a part in the decline. The Roti Island snake-necked turtle is named for its long snake-like neck. Hatchlings are just larger than a penny and weigh almost as much as two pennies. When full grown, it can reach about 9 inches in shell length. It lives in inland lakes and swamps only on Roti Island in Indonesia.
The Fort Worth Zoo is one of the few facilities that has successfully bred this species. Recently, 24 of Fort Worth Zoo-hatched turtles headed to Singapore Zoo before eventually being released into their native range in Indonesia. The release area is protected for the conservation of this species.
The Fort Worth Zoo is grateful to play a part in the repatriation of this species, and we expect more hatchlings to come!