Blanding's Turtle

The Blanding's Turtle, Emydoidea blandingii, is a state endangered turtle found in wetlands in northern Illinois.

We began studying the Blanding's Turtle in the region in 2005,

  • Prior to construction of I-355, we used baited hoop traps, captured 3 Blanding's Turtles and identified potential habitats
  • During construction of I-355 we radio tracked 24 turtles; all survived construction.
  • Following the completion of I-355, we continued tracking turtles and began incubating eggs and head-starting (captive raising) hatchlings to get them through the most vulnerable life stage.


In 2007 we conducted surveys for the Blanding's Turtle at the North Chicago Wetland Mitigation Bank.



In 2016, we captured 14 Blanding's Turtles in hoop traps in the I-355 corridor:

  • 10 were new individuals. 
  • One was a head-started individual that we released in 2009.