How Big Do Painted Turtles Get?

Painted turtles are a freshwater species native to North America and they can grow to be quite large. As adults, painted turtles can reach lengths of up to 8-10 inches, though some may get even bigger. They have beautiful shells that come in various shades of green or brown with yellow stripes across the length of them.

Painted turtles are small to medium-sized aquatic reptiles. They typically reach a maximum length of 8-10 inches and can weigh up to 2 pounds or more. The carapace (top shell) is usually dark with light yellow stripes and spots, while the plastron (bottom shell) may be solid red, yellow or black in color.

Painted Turtles can live more than 40 years in captivity if provided with proper care, although they usually only live 15-20 years in the wild due to predation and other threats.

How Big Do Painted Turtles Get in Captivity?

Painted turtles can grow to a maximum length of 8-10 inches in captivity, although the average size is usually around 4-6 inches. They are among the most popular aquatic turtle species kept as pets due to their relatively small size and ease of care. These colorful reptiles require access to both land and water for optimal health, along with ample basking spots and clean water that is changed regularly.

What Does a Painted Turtle Eat?

Painted turtles, one of the most common types of turtles found in North America, are omnivores and will eat a variety of foods. They primarily consume aquatic vegetation such as duckweed and algae, but they also feed on small crustaceans like crayfish, insects (like dragonflies), snails, and earthworms. Aquatic plants should make up the majority of their diet while meat should be fed sparingly to provide them with needed protein.

How Long Do Painted Turtles Live?

Painted turtles are one of the most common types of aquatic turtles, and they can live for a very long time. On average, painted turtles will live between 15-30 years in the wild, depending on their habitat and access to food sources. In captivity, with proper care, these turtles can live even longer and some have been known to reach up to 40 years old.

Do Painted Turtles Bite?

Painted turtles are generally gentle creatures that rarely bite humans. While they can be aggressive and territorial towards other painted turtles, bites from them are usually light and do not cause any serious harm. However, since they have sharp claws and beaks, it is best to take caution when handling them to avoid potential injuries.

How Long Does It Take for a Painted Turtle to Grow to Full Size?

A painted turtle typically takes between 8 and 12 years to reach its maximum size. The growth process looks something like this:

  • Hatchlings measure around 2cm in length.
  • By the end of their first summer, they have grown to about 5-7cm in length.
  • By 4 or 5 years old, they will be between 10-15 cm long.
  • At full maturity, painted turtles usually reach lengths of 20-25 cm.

Overall, it can take up to a decade for a painted turtle to grow to its full size.

Do Painted Turtles Make Good Pets?

Painted turtles make great pets for those who are willing to commit to their care. They have many appealing features, such as:

  • Attractive colors and markings
  • Adaptable to a wide range of temperatures
  • Require minimal space in captivity

However, painted turtles require a large amount of specialized care from owners.

This includes providing them with the correct diet, clean water, and an adequate habitat. Potential pet owners should do their research before deciding if this species is right for them.

How Big of a Tank Do Painted Turtles Need?

Painted turtles need a large tank in order to properly grow and thrive. To ensure their health and happiness, the following should be kept in mind:

  • Tank size: At least 40 gallons for one adult turtle; additional 20 gallons per extra turtle.
  • Substrate: A soft substrate such as sand or gravel should be used to prevent shell damage.
  • Filtering system: An efficient filtration system is necessary to keep the water clean and healthy.
  • Lighting: Full-spectrum lighting should also be provided to maintain proper temperatures.

A painted turtle needs an adequate-sized tank that provides them with a healthy environment so it can live happily for many years.

Can You Hold a Painted Turtle?

Yes, you can hold a painted turtle. However, there are some things to consider before doing so:

  • Turtles may be stressed by being held they should only be handled when necessary and returned to their tank as soon as possible.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly both before and after handling the turtle to prevent the spreading of bacteria or illness.
  • When holding the turtle, grip it securely but gently enough not to hurt them; support its body with one hand while using the other one for stability.
  • Painted turtles don’t like bright light so keep them in shadows when holding them outdoors.

Overall, proper care must be taken when handling any type of animal – including turtles – for their safety and well-being.

Painted Turtles info and care video


Painted turtles are a fascinating species of turtle that can grow to be quite large. Their size varies depending on their environment and diet, but they typically reach lengths of 8-10 inches in adulthood. It’s important to provide them with the right habitat and food sources so they can attain their full potential size.

Painted turtles make great pets when given proper care and attention, making them an ideal choice for those looking for a pet reptile.