The primarily carnivorous black marsh turtle feeds on worms, snails, slugs, shrimp, and amphibians, and also scavenges dead and decaying animals (2) (6). Occasionally, it may also consume rotten plants that have fallen into the water. Most of this food is captured and eaten underwater, but during the night the turtle may venture onto land to forage or to mate. When not feeding, the black marsh turtle spends much of the time partially buried in mud at the bottom of its aquatic habitat (6).
During courtship, a male black marsh turtle pursues a female whilst bobbing its head and inflicts bites on the female’s legs before mating. The nesting season, at least in Malaysia, extends from April through June, when females may lay three or four clutches, each consisting of one or two eggs. The eggs are incubated for 68 to 84 days, after which the tiny hatchlings, measuring less than five centimetres, emerge (6). Unlike the majority of turtles, the sex of hatchlings is not determined by the temperature during incubation, but is genetically determined (7).