Broad Shell Snake-Necked Turtle

Snake-Neck Turtle

Chelodina expansa


This turtle’s long neck can add 80 percent to its body length, aiding in its deception strategy for ambush hunting.

Exhibit Name and Location:
Baltimore - Animal Planet Australia: Wild Extremes

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Broad Shell Snake-Necked Turtle Broad Shell Snake-Necked Turtle Broad Shell Snake-Necked Turtle Broad Shell Snake-Necked Turtle Broad Shell Snake-Necked Turtle

Broad-shelled Snake-neck Turtle

The largest of the snake neck turtles, the broad shelled shake neck turtle folds its neck and head under the leading edge of the carapace (upper shell). Their shells are relatively flattened in appearance, and they have clawed webbed feet.


These turtles are omnivores and opportunistic, eating whatever they can catch. Their long snake-like necks aid in ambushing prey such as small fish and aquatic invertebrates.


This species is the largest of Australia’s freshwater turtles. Its carapace measures up to 20 inches in length, approximately the size of a trash can lid.


These turtles are found in permanent bodies of fresh water in the Murray-Darling River system of South Australia, New South Wales, and Queensland, the coastal basins of southeastern Queensland, and on Fraser Island.

Population Status

The population is believed to be stable.


As adults, they have few predators. Juveniles are preyed upon by crocodiles, fish, and even foxes and birds eat young turtles and eggs.

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A Note From the Caretaker

Their favorite hiding spot in the Animal Planet Australia: Wild Extremes exhibit is among the dead logs in the corner of one the tanks. They are deceptive predators. They want to be in an area where they blend in and then they just extend their big long neck and suck everything up in front of them.