Mark International Turtle Day and highlight the threat faced by endangered turtles with this colourful souvenir sheet. This attractive collectible features two PermanentTMdomestic stamps, one depicting the Blanding’s turtle (Emydoidea blandingii) and a second featuring the spotted turtle (Clemmys guttata). Text on the reverse describes interesting facts about each of the featured turtles.
Both turtle species have been assessed as endangered by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC).
Canadian populations of Blanding’s turtles are found in Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia. This medium-sized turtle is known for the distinctive upward curve of its mouth, giving the appearance of a perpetual smile. Blanding’s turtles can also be identified by their bright yellow throat and distinctive domed shell. Found primarily in shallow waters, Blanding’s turtles also make long overland journeys, with some females travelling more than 10 kilometres during nesting season.
The spotted turtle is named for the yellow-orange spots that dot its shell, neck, head and limbs. In Canada, this semi-aquatic turtle is often found in shallow bogs, ponds, marshes and bays, as well as slow-moving streams in pockets of central and southern Ontario. One of the province’s smallest turtles, its shell measures less than 13 centimetres in length.
Habitat loss, road mortality and illegal collection are among the biggest threats facing Canada’s turtle populations today.