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Pond Slider
(Red-eared slider)
(Trachemys scripta)

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Invasive Status
Mildly Invasive Population increasing
Natural Range
  • East USA
  • North-east Mexico
Introduced Range
  • North America
  • Caribbean Sea
  • Parts of South America
  • Oceania
  • South-east Asia
  • South Africa
  • Europe
Pathways
Pet trade
Impacts

Outcompeting natives for food

Crossbreeding with native species

Predation of native species

Removal Methods

Trapping

Hunting

Removal of Eggs

The pond slider (Trachemys scripta) is a species of freshwater terrapin native to the USA. The red-eared slider (Trachemys scripta elegans) is a subspecies of this species which is kept as a pet and is often used to refer to the species as a whole.

RangeEdit

Native RangeEdit

The pond slider is native to the USA's Mississipi River Basin in the states of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, south and west Indiana, south Ohio, western West Virignia, Alabama, the Florida Panhandle, Georgia, South Carolina and eastern North Carolina. It can aslo be found in north-east Mexico. [1]

Introduced RangeEdit

Within the USA, the pond slider has been introduced to the west coast, central Arizona, central-south New Mexico, west and south-east Michigan, the east coast and Florida. Off the mainland, it has also been introduced to the Hawaiian islands of Hawaii Island, Oahu and Kaua'i and Peurto Rico. [2] It is also present in the Canadian state of British Columbia [3] , as well as Bermuda. [4]

In Central America, the pond slider has been introduced to the Bahamas, the British Virgin islands, the Cayman Islands, the Dominican Republic, Gaudaloupe, Martinique, Saint Lucia and Trinidad and Tobego. On the mainland, it can also be found in Costa Rica and Panama. [3]

Within South America, this terrapin is present in Brazil, Guyana and Chile. [3]

In Oceania and Australasia, the pond slider has become established in the Australian states of New South Wales and Queensland, as well as New Zealand, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, New Caledonia and French Polynesia. [3]

The pond slider's Asian range spreads through Japan (including the Ryukyu Peninsula), Taiwan (where it is now the second most common turtle species^), North Korea (DRP Korea), South Korea (RoK), parts of China, including Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia (Kalimantan and Sulawesi). It is also present in Bahrain and Israel. [3]

In Africa, the pond slider has been relased into South Africa, Réunion and the Canary Islands. [3]

In Europe, this species is established in Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Austria, Germany,  Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, Belgium, France, Spain (including the balearic Islands and Gibraltar) and the UK. [3]

Pathways and IntroductionEdit

The pond slider, especially one particular subspecies, the red-eared slider, has been available as a pet since the early 20th Century. Owners often underestimate the size and demands of the terrapins and release the animals when they become too troublesome to look after. [5]

ImpactsEdit

Pond sliders can be aggressive and larger than native turtles. They can outcompete native species filling similar niches by bullying them away from food. They can also outcompete closely-related species, such as painted turtles, for mates and inmterbeed with them. [5]

Invasive pond sliders also eat native species, such as the Bermuda killifish. [4]

Pond sliders also outcompete smaller native species for egg-laying sites and basking places. [3]

Control and Removal MethodsEdit

Invasive pond slider populations are controlled and remove through the use of trapping, hunting and the collection of eggs. [5]

Banning of the trade of this species in the US has had little effect. In fact, the trade of other, potentially more invasive species became more common. [3]

SourcesEdit

1 Carnivora Forum

2 United States Geological Survey Nonindeginous Aquatic Species

3 Invasive Species Compendium

4 Bermuda Zoological Society

5 Introduced Species Summary Project