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Wattle-necked Softshell Turtle

Palea steindachneri


Due to the high demand for wattle-necked softshell turtle meat, conservation efforts may not be successful in its native range. The future of this unique species may depend on introduced populations in Hawaii, USA.

Freshwater habitat degradation, combined with a high demand for this species in Asian food markets, undermines conservation efforts for this species in its native range. Populations of this species in Hawaii are very important as they offer an ex situ conservation opportunity for this species, away from the demand for food.

More information on the ecology and population status of this distinctive turtle would aid conservation measures. The species is listed as Endangered by the IUCN Red List though, at the time of writing, this assessment is in need of updating. It is listed on CITES Appendix II.

  • Order: Testudines
  • Family: Trionychidae
  • Population: Unknown
  • Trend: decreasing
  • Size: 25-45cm

EDGE Score

EDGE Score: 5.70 (?)
ED Score: 36.221 (?)
GE / IUCN Red List (?)
Not Evaluated Data Deficient Least Concern Near Threatened Vulnerable Endangered Critically Endangered Extinct in the Wild Extinct


This species is native to China and Vietnam but has also been introduced to Mauritius and Hawaii, USA.

Habitat and Ecology

This species’ habitat primarily consists of freshwater streams, rivers, lakes, ponds and marshes from sea level up to 1,500 metres above sea level. Adults are strictly aquatic and rarely bask. The species is mainly diurnal (active during the day) and remains active year round.

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