Semaru box turtles are small and very cute turtles that live in Japan, China, and Taiwan. With a body length of just under 20cm, it looks very small. There are two types of box turtles, the Yaeyama box turtle and the Chinese box turtle, which live in various parts of East Asia. Semaru box turtles, which live in Japan, are in danger of extinction and are designated as an endangered species. Furthermore, it is also listed in the Washington Convention Appendices, and exports are restricted.
Semaru box turtles live in various parts of East Asia.
The Semaru box turtle is about 19 cm in total length and belongs to the family Pond turtle. The carapace is dome-shaped, and the carapace is elliptical or egg-shaped when viewed from above. The head is rather large. The color is black with orange dots. The box turtle inhabits the mountains and forest areas of Japan, Taiwan, and China. This turtle can live both on land and in water. Black turtles are often active during the daytime. There are three main types of Semaru box turtles: the Yae Yamasemaru box turtle, which is endemic to Japan and lives in Okinawa, the Chinese box turtle, and the Taiwanese box turtle. They are a little timid and when they are frightened or feel threatened, they will retract their heads and legs into their shells and fold their ventral shells to protect themselves.
In addition to earthworms, snails, and insects, the box turtle can also eat plants such as fruits and leaves. The mode of reproduction is oviparous. Breeding takes place from June to September every year. Females lay 2-6 or more eggs in batches. Eggs hatch within three months. The lifespan of the box turtle is said to be around 20 years in captivity.
The Chinese box turtle is said to have a low risk of extinction in China and Taiwan. The critical situation is the giant box turtle that lives in Japan. The Japanese box turtle lives only on Iriomote Island and Ishigaki Island, and due to the demand for pets, its population is declining due to overhunting, and it is registered as a natural monument by the Japanese government. In 2000, the box turtle genus was listed in Appendix II of the Washington Convention as a genus unit, which restricted international trade and decreased the distribution volume. In addition, the Yaeyamasemaru Box Turtle is also designated as an endangered species. It is forbidden to even touch the wild species of the giant box turtle. Other reasons for the decline include land development and overexploitation for food and medicinal purposes.
Japanese box turtles cannot be kept, but Chinese and Taiwanese box turtles can be kept. Sea turtles can be kept in aquariums just like tropical fish. Please bring at least the following tools. It is a good idea to give artificial feed to the staple food of the Semaru Box Turtle.
Larger tanks are required for breeding the box turtle. This is because the box turtles are energetically active.
Small box turtles tend to move a lot and get dirty for a small turtle. The water is easy to get dirty, so it is better to put it in to make maintenance easier.
Black turtles need a basking light because they bask in the sun frequently. Deficiency will adversely affect the growth of the shell and is not good for health.