Adult Batagur turtles can reach a maximum length of about 23 inches. The shell is a uniform brown, smooth and heavy, with very little indication of scute boundaries. The head is small to moderately-sized with an upturned, pointed snout and a medially notched upper jaw. The head is olive gray on top, lighter gray on the sides and bottom, with light colored jaws. Both the upper and lower jaws have a denticulated (having very small teeth or serrations) middle ridge. The plastron is orange-yellow with smaller carapace opening. During the breeding season the male assumes a much brighter coloration, the nostrils becoming pale blue, but the rest of the head an intense black, changing to a rich crimson at the neck. This crimson color extends over the whole area of the front limbs. There are four claws on each front foot. All the toes are webbed with only 4 toes on the front feet. The skin is olive gray. Males have a longer, thicker tail and are somewhat smaller than the females.