Chelidae – South American side-neck turtles

We fold our necks sideways, rather than pulling them straight back

As far as turtles go, side-neck turtles are on the larger side and have a long lifespan. South America, sub-Saharan Africa, Indonesia, Australia, and New Guinea are all home to side-necked turtles.

Because of their extraordinarily long and narrow necks, several side-necked turtles are also called snake-necked turtles.

Their skin can be olive to brown with black markings on the top of their heads, and their shell is frequently a dark brown. They feature huge, round eyes and a mouth that appears to be permanently grinning. These turtles are frequently spotted in freshwater rivers and lakes with standing water all year.