An artist's illustration of Carbonemys cofrinii
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Sauropsida
Family: Podocnemididae
Genus: Carbonemys
Cadena et al., 2012
Type species
Carbonemys cofrinii
Cadena et al., 2012

Carbonemys cofrinii is an extinct podocnemidid turtle known from the Middle Paleocene Cerrejón Formation of the Cesar-Ranchería Basin in northeastern Colombia. The formation is dated at around 60 to 57 million years ago, starting at about five million years after the KT extinction event. Even though it was the size of a small car, it probably lived like a modern-day snapping turtle.


In 2005, the holotype specimen was discovered in the Cerrejón coal mine by a North Carolina State University doctoral student named Edwin Cadena. It had a shell that measured about 1.72 metres (5 ft 8 in), making it one of the world's largest turtles.[2][3]

The jaws of Carbonemys were massive and would be powerful enough to eat crocodilians, that were abundant in the first neotropical forest of the Cerrejón Formation.[4] This turtle coexisted with the giant boid (constrictor), Titanoboa.

In popular culture[]