Mauremys mutica is listed on CITES Appendix II. It is not protected under Vietnamese regulations and is not listed on the China National Key Protected Species List. Establishment of one or more assurance colonies based on genetically verified pure animals of known locality is recommended.
In China, Mauremys mutica is found at low elevations in the southern parts of the country in Hainan, Guangdong, Guangxi, Yunan, Fujian, Hunan, Hubei, Jiangsu, Anhui, Zhejiang and Taiwan. It is also found in northern and central Viet Nam in the lowlands and in Lao PDR.
China, Japan, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Taiwan, Province of China, Viet Nam
In 1999, Mauremys mutica was considered Endangered in Viet Nam and China; and a corresponding decline had been observed in market supply (B. Chan, R. Kan and M. Lau, pers. comm. 1999). Only one captive animal was encountered during interview surveys in Viet Nam in 2000. It was considered VU A1c in Taiwan (T. Chen, pers. comm. 1999) but had become rare by about 2015. It is considered Endangered on the recent Chinese National Red List. A population reduction of over 80% is suspected over its entire range within the last three generations.
This is one of the most valuable turtle species in the commercial trade and farming efforts (after the Cuora box turtles) and has consequently been intensively collected throughout its range, most recently impacting the remaining populations of Taiwan.
Habitat loss in Viet Nam has been significant as nearly all lowland wetlands have been converted to rice paddies.