Discovering the Wonders of Turtles: 12 Surprising and Entertaining Facts


What do you know about turtles? Chances are, you know they’re slow. Yet somehow in a popular fable, turtles manage to beat hares at races! Or is that tortoise instead? Continue reading this fascinating topic for answers as well as more interesting turtle facts!

1. Turtles and tortoises don’t look the same (see #12 Amazing Turtle Facts ). * Have one turtle on hand at all times
Image Credits: Pixabay
Tortoises and turtles are both aquatic reptiles; however, one key difference between tortoises and turtles is that tortoises typically prefer terrestrial environments while turtles prefer water environments.

Tortoises also differ from turtles in appearance; they have thicker rear legs and a more rounded shell; in order to help with swimming, however, turtles have webbed feet and thinner legs than tortoises.

2.Turtles have existed for more than 200 million years. One example is the Eastern Painted Turtle.
The oldest known turtle with a fully formed hard shell dates back approximately 210 million years; however, fossil remains of an early specimen dating even further were discovered in China in 2008. Today there are hundreds of variations among various species.

3.The turtle’s shell is part of its skeleton.
Turtle shells are composed of over 60 bones fused together to form protective covering. Furthermore, this shell is attached directly to its spinal column and cannot be detached – disproving any popular beliefs that turtles can escape their shell. Instead, some turtles can retract into their shell for hiding purposes while others, like snapping turtles cannot.

4.A turtle’s diet can vary. Painted turtles on the ground tend to graze on plants for sustenance.
Turtle diets vary significantly depending on where they reside, from eating insects and small fish, to devouring small crustaceans and aquatic plants – though tortoises are herbivorous species who consume only fruits and vegetables.

5.The oldest turtle ever recorded is currently estimated at being 189 years old! A turtle found on top of a log.
Image Credits: Capri23auto and Pixabay Jonathan is thought to be the oldest tortoise ever. Located on St Helena Island of Seychelles Islands, Jonathan recently overtook another tortoise at 188 years to claim this record title.

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