Zoo is second facility in Europe to successfully hatch Heosemys spinosa.
The Prague Zoo has successfully hatched a spine turtle (Heosemys spinosa), marking only the second time a spine turtle has successfully hatched in Europe, according to a news report in the Prague Daily Monitor. The spine turtle measured 53mm long and weighed 38 grams at birth.
The parents of the newly hatched turtle were rescued several years ago among some 10,000 other turtles from a smuggler's ship in Hong Kong, where they were apparently destined for the Chinese food market. As part of the rescue, the turtles were sent to zoos all across the world. The Prague Zoo received three spiny turtles, two female and one male, that were among the hundreds of turtles the zoo received from the seizure in Hong Kong.
The spine turtle lays one to two eggs per clutch, three times a year. It lives close to shallow rainforest streams among cool, humid and shaded areas. It primarily eats vegetable matter as well as fruit and have been known to eat meat in captivity.
The spine turtle is listed on the IUCN Red List as an endangered species and can be found in Southeast Asia.