(UNDATED) – There are few things more harrowing than watching a turtle trying to cross the road. You can help the turtle cross, but don’t take it home. Several of Indiana’s turtle species are illegal to take or possess, including the Eastern box turtle (pictured below).
If you encounter a turtle who may need help, remember:
- People often encounter nesting females on roads during May and June. If a female is taken out of the wild, she can no longer add to the population.
- Turtles are long-lived species and have important care requirements. Captive turtles cannot be released into the wild. They can introduce diseases or parasites to the wild population, and they will likely not survive.
- You can help turtles cross the road. Always move the turtle across the road in the direction that it was heading.
- Any turtle collected from the wild requires either a legal license or permit and all reptile eggs and endangered species or species of special concern are protected.