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Hardella thurjii (GRAY, 1831)

IUCN Red List - Hardella thurjii - Vulnerable, VU

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Higher TaxaGeoemydidae (Geoemydinae), Testudinoidea, Testudines (turtles)
Common NamesE: Brahminy River Turtle; Crowned River Turtle
G: Diademschildkröte 
SynonymEmys thurjii GRAY 1831
Emys thuji — GRAY (ex errore) 1831
Emys thuryi — GRAY (ex errore) 1831
Emys flavonigra LESSON 1831
Emys Thurjii — DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1835: 318
Kachuga oldhami GRAY 1869
Hardella indi GRAY 1870 (fide WERMUTH & MERTENS 1977)
Hardella thurgi — GRAY 1870 (ex errore)
Batagur thurgi — MURRAY 1886: 9 (in error)
Hardella thurjii indi — HALLERMANN et al. 2001
Hardella thurjii — OBST 2003: 17
Hardella thurgi — VYAS 2007 (in error)
Hardella thurjii — TTWG 2014
Hardella thurjii — TTWG 2021 
DistributionN India (Assam, Punjab etc., extremely rare in Gujarat), Nepal,
Bangladesh (watersheds of the Ganges, Brahmaputra, and Indus rivers),

Type locality: "India".  
TypesType: BMNH ?, but not listed by Boulenger 1889:63-66.
Holotype: BMNH 1947.3.4.74 [indi]
Holotype: BMNH 1947.3.4.73 [oldhami] 
CommentSubspecies: PRASCHAG et al. (2007) suggested to abandon the subspecies of H. thurji as they lack sufficient morphological and genetic differences.

Type species: Emys thurjii GRAY 1831 is the type species of the genus Hardella GRAY 1870: 58.

Distribution: possibly in Bhutan (Lenz 2012 and references therein). Sharma (2000) reported Hardella thurjii from North Gujarat without any specimen vouchers (or photos) or specific locality details but others (Vyas, 2000a, 2007; Patel et al., 2018) did not report these species. As a consequence, Patel & Vyas 2019 consider both records dubious.

Habitat: freshwater (Rivers, lakes) 
  • Ali, Waqas; Arshad Javid, Ali Hussain & Syed Mohsin Bukhari 2018. Diversity and conservation of freshwater turtles in Pakistan: a review. Biodiversity 19 (1-2): 62-71 - get paper here
  • Basumatary, Rajeev and D.K. Sharma 2013. The turtle fauna of Kaziranga National Park, Assam, India with notes on natural history and conservation status. Herpetology Notes 6: 59-72
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1889. Catalogue of the chelonians, rhynchocephalians, and crocodiles in the British Museum (Natural History). British Museum, London, 311 pp.
  • Bour, R. 2008. Global diversity of turtles (Chelonii; Reptilia) in freshwater. Hydrobiologia 595:593–598 - get paper here
  • Das, I. et al. 2008. Tortoises and Freshwater Turtles of India. WWF/WII poster
  • Das, Indraneil 1984. Record length of the Brahminy River turtle Hardella thurjii. Hamadryad 9 (3): 18 - get paper here
  • Das, Indraneil & Abhijit Das 2017. A Naturalist’s Guide to the Reptiles of India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. John Beaufoy Publishing Ltd., Oxford, 176 pp.
  • Duméril, A.M.C., and G. Bibron. 1835. Erpétologie Générale ou Histoire Naturelle Complète des Reptiles, Vol. 2. Librairie Encyclopédique de Roret, Paris, iv + 680 p. - get paper here
  • Dutta S, Pareek PS, Singh A, Riedle JD, Singh S. 2022. First record of albinism in the Crowned River Turtle, Hardella thurjii, Gray, 1831 (Reptilia: Testudines, Geoemydidae). Zootaxa 5091 (1):197-200 - get paper here
  • Ernst,C.H. and Barbour,R.W. 1989. Turtles of the World. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington D.C. - London
  • Gray, J. E. 1831. Synopsis Reptilium or short descriptions of the species of reptiles. Part I: Cataphracta, tortoises, crocodiles, and enaliosaurians. Treuttel, Wurz & Co., London, 85 pp. - get paper here
  • Gray, J.E. 1870. Supplement to the Catalogue of Shield Reptiles in the Collection of the British Museum. Part 1. Testudinata (Tortoises). Taylor and Francis, London. 120 p., 40 figs.
  • Hallermann J., N. B. Ananjeva and N.L.Orlov. 2001. On a remarkable collection of reptiles and amphibians collected by the German Indian Expedition 1955-1958. Russ. J. Herpetol. 8 (1): 25-34 - get paper here
  • Kästle , W., Rai, K. & Schleich, H.H. 2013. FIELD GUIDE to Amphibians and Reptiles of Nepal. ARCO-Nepal e.V., 625 pp. - get paper here
  • Khan, M.S. 2006. Amphibians and reptiles of Pakistan. Krieger, Malabar, 311 pp. - get paper here
  • Lenz, Norbert 2012. Von Schmetterlingen und Donnerdrachen - Natur und Kultur in Bhutan. Karlsruher Naturhefte 4, Naturkundemuseum Karlsruhe, 124 pp.
  • Ludwig, Maxim; Auer, Markus; Fritz, Uwe 2007. Phalangeal formulae of geoemydid terrapins (Batagur, Callagur, Hardella, Heosemys, Kachuga, Orlitia, Pangshura, Rhinoclemmys) reflect distinct modes of life. Amphibia-Reptilia 28 (4): 574-576 - get paper here
  • McCord, W.P. & Joseph-Ouni, M. 2003. Chelonian Illustrations #10. Monotypic genera of the family Geoemydidae. Reptilia (GB) (30): 34-38 - get paper here
  • Minton, Sherman A., Jr;Anderson, Jerome A. 1962. A record of the turtle, Hardella thurji from Salt water. Herpetologica 12: 126 - get paper here
  • Murray, James A. 1886. The reptiles of Sind : a systematic account, with descriptions of all the species inhabiting the province, and a table of their geographical distribution in Persia, Beloochistan, Afghanistan, Punjab, North-west Provinces and the peninsula of India ge London : Richardson & Co - get paper here
  • Obst, F.J. 2003. Sumpfschildkröten. Draco 4 (13): 4-18 - get paper here
  • Patel, Harshil; and Raju Vyas 2019. Reptiles of Gujarat, India: Updated Checklist, Distribution, and Conservation Status. Herpetology Notes 12: 765-777 - get paper here
  • Praschag, P.; Hundsdörfer, A.K. & Fritz, U. 2007. Phylogeny and taxonomy of endangered South and South-east Asian freshwater turtles elucidated by mtDNA sequence variation (Testudines: Geoemydidae: Batagur, Callagur, Hardella, Kachuga, Pangshura). Zoologica Scripta 36 (5): 429–442 - get paper here
  • Purkayastha J. 2013. An Amateur’s Guide to Reptiles of Assam. EBH Publishers (India) - get paper here
  • Purkayastha, J., DAS, I., Sengupta, S. 2015. Freshwater Turtles & Tortoises of South Asia. Bhabani Books, 138 pp. - get paper here
  • Purkayastha, Jayaditya; Ahmed Mahmadul Hassan, Hasanul Islam, Jessica Das, Manoj Sarma, Mituseela Basumatary, Nilakshi Sarma, Nishant Chatterjee, Sachin Singha, Vishnupriya Nair, Arundhati Purkayastha, Jayashree Dutta, Madhurima Das 2013. Turtles of the Temple Pond of Kamakhya, Assam, India. Reptile Rap (15): 11-15 - get paper here
  • Singh J, Dutta S.K., Singh H 2021. Herpetofauna of Punjab: The Field Guide. New Era Book Agency, Chandigarh, 82 pp.
  • TTWG [Peter Paul van Dijk, John B. Iverson, Anders G.J. Rhodin, H. Bradley Shaffer, and Roger Bour] 2014. Turtles of the World, 7th Edition: Annotated Checklist of Taxonomy, Synonymy, Distribution with Maps, and Conservation Status. 000.v7. Chelonian Research Monographs (ISSN 1088-7105) No. 5, doi:10.3854/crm.5.000.checklist.v7.2014 - get paper here
  • TTWG; Rhodin, A.G.J., Iverson, J.B., Bour, R., Fritz, U., Georges, A., Shaffer, H.B., and van Dijk, P.P. 2021. Turtles of the World: Annotated Checklist and Atlas of Taxonomy, Synonymy, Distribution, and Conservation Status (9th Ed.). In: Rhodin, A.G.J., Iverson, J.B., van Dijk, P.P., Stanford, C.B., Goode, E.V., Buhlmann, K.A., and Mittermeier, R.A. (Eds.). Chelonian Research Monographs 8:1–472. doi:10.3854/crm.8.checklist.atlas.v9.2021. - get paper here
  • Vyas, Raju 2007. Present conservation scenario of reptile fauna in Gujarat State, India. Indian Forester, Oct 2007: 1381-1394 - get paper here
  • VYAS, RAJU & HARSHIL PATEL. 2021. On the occurance of crowned river turtle, Hardella thurjii in Gujarat, India. Taprobanica 10 (2): 132–132. - get paper here
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