Chinese Golden Coin Turtle (Cuora Trifasciata ) is one of the world’s rarest box turtles – and it’s brightly colored, contrasting pattern also makes it one of the world’s prettiest turtle species. More commonly known by turtle enthusiasts as the Chinese Three-Striped Box Turtle, this semi aquatic turtle comes from Southern China, Hainan Island, Hong Kong, North Vietnam, and Laos.
In nature, this species is all but gone… here’s why: Chinese Golden Coin turtles are used in traditional Chinese medicine. Recent (unsubstantiated) claims that they can cure cancer have dramatically increased demand for them. The high market value for Golden Coin turtles has led to over-collection, and they have disappeared over their range. In Vietnam, villagers can trade a hatchling golden coin turtle for an adult buffalo. Similarly, a mainland Chinese person will have enough money to build a house if they were able to catch and sell an adult golden coin turtle. Now appropriately given the strictest protections throughout their range, captive breeding may be what saves this extraordinary species from extinction…
Chinese Golden Coin Turtles lay two, at most three eggs. We only hatch a few each year, and we prefer to get them very well started before making them available.
They love pellets, fish, earth worms and insects. Very easy to keep, these very special turtles are quite personable, friendly and interactive. Their diet, climbing ability, high intelligence, and even their brilliant colors are very similar to North American Wood Turtles – so it is easy to see why keepers love them. Only a small handful of US breeders are currently working with them – in time we are hopeful that these efforts will make this rare species more available to all keepers