Welcome to Graptemys.com

The purpose of this page is to provide information about the natural history, identification, conservation, legal status, and just overall interest in this group of Emydid turtles called the map turtles (Genus: Graptemys). This website contains a forum where all interested parties from turtle biologists to hobbyists can have open discussion about all aspects of Graptemys. This is a work in progress, so material will be posted slowly as it is finished. Thank you for your interest.  Chris Lechowicz


Recognized Species

  • Northern map turtle or common map turtle (G. geographica)  Le Sueur, 1817
  • False map turtle (G. pseudogeographica)
  •          False map turtle (G. p. pseudogeographica) Gray, 1831
  •          Mississippi map turtle (G. p. kohnii) Baur, 1890
  • Ringed map turtle (G. oculifera) Baur, 1890.
  • Alabama map turtle (G. pulchra) Baur 1893.
  • Texas map turtle (G. versa) Stejneger, 1925
  • Barbour’s map turtle (G. barbouri) Carr & Marchand, 1942
  • Ouachita map turtle (G. ouachitensis) Cagle, 1953
  • Black-knobbed map turtle or sawback (G. nigrinoda) Cagle, 1954
  • Yellow-blotched map turtle or sawback (G. flavimaculata) Cagle, 1954
  • Cagle’s map turtle (G. caglei) Haynes & McKown, 1974  
  • Escambia map turtle (G. ernsti) Lovich & McCoy, 1992
  • Pascagoula River map turtle (G. gibbonsi) Lovich & McCoy, 1992
  • Pearl River map turtle (G. pearlensis) Ennen et al., 2010
  • Sabine map turtle (G. sabinensis) Lindeman, 2013

→  =  Species description nearly complete.

  = Species description complete. CLICK to view

About Map Turtles

There are currently fourteen recognized species and two valid subspecies of map turtles.  Graptemys (map turtles) are the most diverse Genus of turtles in the United States. They are primarily a riverine species that can exist sympatrically (with other Graptemys species) or allopatrically (as the sole Graptemys species) in a river drainage or drainages. Some species are endemic to a single river system or a few river systems, others are wide ranging species existing in many river systems. Most sympatric populations of map turtles consist of each species (females only) having different head types (megacephaly-wide, mesocephaly-medium, microcephaly- narrow) to alleviate competition of food resources.


We’re back! It’s been a long time coming.

Hi, I purchased the domain Graptemys.com in 2001 due to my interest and infatuation with the turtles in the Genus Graptemys. My passion for this group of turtles started in elementary school from studying my treasured herp books such as Conant’s The Peterson Field Guide to the Reptiles and Amphibians of Eastern/Central North America (1975),  Smith …