Dragon turtle

From PathfinderWiki
Dragon turtle

A dragon turtle is a massive creature that resembles a cross between a snapping turtle and a dragon.12


Dragon turtles are characterized by their large, rocky shells resembling a tortoise's. Their large flippers are strong enough to capsize substantial ships, and sailors frequently warn about them among the open ocean's many dangers.1

Most dragon turtles measure at least 20 feet in width by 50 feet in length. Giant dragon turtles are ancient and can resemble islands while at sea, and stories tell of legendary dragon turtles far from shipping lanes that are large enough to bear and support entire settlements on their backs.1

Habitat and society

Dragon turtles are intelligent creatures capable of speaking several languages, including Draconic, Thalassic, and Common languages such as Taldane.1

They are solitary in nature, can live in both salt and fresh water, and can live in the ocean, on coastlines, or in large lakes.1 They often claim large territories as large as 100 square miles. They lair in underwater caves. They usually feed on large fish, but can also eat seaweed.1

Like dragons, dragon turtles are hoarding creatures and take pride in how much treasure they can amass. Many store their hordes in the remains of shipwrecks on the ocean floor. Sailors sometimes pay tribute to dragon turtles for safe passage, and those who do not may find their ships sunk and their crews eaten.1


The thick shell of a dragon turtle provides excellent protection, equivalent to the thick hide of an adult white dragon. They have powerful teeth and fore claws, and their flippers are capable of capsizing ships.12

A dragon turtle can also exhale a cloud of deadly steam, which is equally effective above and below the water.12

On Golarion

Dragon turtles live, among other places, in the western seas of the Shackles, where they pose a threat to ships skirting the edge of the Eye of Abendego.3 They are also known to dwell near the Devil's Drain which separates the Linnorm Kingdom of Southmoor from Dragon's Rib island in the Ironbound Islands. Here, dragon turtles drive ships into the whirlpool of Devil's Drain so they can feast on the shipwrecked sailors.4

The southern waters of the Embaral Ocean are home to an ancient dragon turtle named Calan, who ferociously defends the whales that migrate through his territory every year against whalers. At least one attempt to slay him to open up the southern waters to whaling has been attempted, which ended in failure after Calan split the ship sent to kill him in half and killed his would-be slayers.5


For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Logan Bonner, et al. “Monsters A-Z” in Bestiary, 128. Paizo Inc., 2019
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Paizo Inc., et al. “Monsters A to Z” in Bestiary, 112. Paizo Inc., 2009
  3. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 171. Paizo Inc., 2011
  4. Matthew Goodall, et al. “The Linnorm Kingdoms” in Lands of the Linnorm Kings, 23. Paizo Inc., 2011
  5. Amber E. Scott & Mark Seifter. Embaral Ocean” in Aquatic Adventures, 13. Paizo Inc., 2017