Great Plains Natural Science Society


The Prairie Naturalist

Date of this Version


Document Type



THE PRAIRIE NATURALIST, Volume 37, No. 2, June 2005, pp 123-124.


Published by the Great Plains Natural Science Society. Used by permission.


On 11 June 2003, one of us (EJS) found an ornate box turtle crossing BIA Highway 2, approximately 7.2 km north of Sharps Comer on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in Shannon County, South Dakota. The air temperature at the time of collection was approximately 30°C, and the substrate was moist from light rain the previous day. The turtle was an adult female with a straight-line carapace length of 118 mm. Other straight-line measurements were: maximum carapace width = 100 mm; plastron length = 122 mm; maximum plastron width = 82 mm; and maximum shell depth = 64 mm. We deposited voucher photographs (CUSC 2166) of the turtle in the Campbell Museum, Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina. Our specimen constitutes the first record of the ornate box turtle from Shannon County, and represents the westernmost occurrence of this species yet documented in South Dakota (Ballinger et al. 2000).