A very large freshwater turtle, she's an alligator, she's a biting turtle. It lives in rivers, ponds and canals, in the southeastern United States, mainly in the Mississippi basin. In size , the vulture turtle exceeds its relative , the caiman turtle , and can reach a length of up to 1.5 m and a mass of up to 60 kg or more .
The pointed mounds located in several rows are very similar to the crests of an alligator, for which the turtle received one of its names. But she was nicknamed the biting one for her powerful and very dangerous jaws, which look like carpenter's pincers: the ossified ends of the mouth are bent inward, which makes it easy to bite the victim in half.
The main food is fish and the turtle catches it with the help of a wriggling "worm" – a red worm-like tip of the tongue, which serves as a bait. It also eats plants, various invertebrates, reptiles and birds.
There are 20-40 eggs in the clutch, which the female buries at a depth of up to 1.5 m. Puberty begins at the age of 13. In nature, these reptiles can live for about 80 years, while in a zoo or at home, this figure will be 10-20 years less.