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Ways to help box turtles

Box turtle populations rely on the survival of adults for long-term sustainability. For stressed populations, a loss of just a handful of adult females could result in the demise of that population. Simple acts for small numbers of individuals can make a big difference for box turtles.

Support habitat protection efforts

The key to conserving native animal and plant populations is protecting where they live. Large blocks of contiguous good-quality habitat, undivided by roads, are what box turtle populations need to survive. Support of conservation efforts to protect such areas will not only benefit box turtles, but other native species as well.

Don't remove turtles from the wild

The specific needs of box turtles are rarely met in captivity, and wild captives typically fail to thrive and slowly die. Even just moving the turtle from its home range is potentially damaging. A displaced turtle will wander in search of its old home. This wandering puts a turtle at increased risk of predation, road kill, and starvation. If you come across a box turtle, admire it, and let it go along its way.

Helping turtles on roadways

If you see a box turtle on the road, try to avoid it if you can do so without endangering yourself or others. If you choose to help a turtle cross a road do so carefully. Always place turtles on the side of the road in the direction they were originally headed. Their homing instincts are so strong, they will simply turn around and try again.

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