Soft Shell Turtle
Live Turtle [family Trionychidae; Florida Soft Shell Turtle, Apalone ferox]

The Chinese, having eaten their own soft shell turtles to the verge of extinction are now determined to do the same to ours. At least one Asian market in Los Angeles has these for sale live as "soft shell turtle".   Photo by Jonskate17 distributed under license Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported.

Florida soft shell turtles are quite large, with males growing to 14 inches and 10 pounds while females grow to 30 inches and over 44 pounds. Those I've seen for sale here in Los Angeles have a shell length of about 13 inches.

I do not object to the sale of these turtles for eating in North America, not very many will be sold here, but exports to China and other Asian countries should be watched closely to assure sustainability of the population. Populations of these turtles are currently listed as "Least Concern".

rp_turtssz 061111   -
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