Turtles are found on most continents on our planet and sea turtles are mainly found in the ocean. They generally feed either on plant material (grass and vegetation) or on animals with limited movements like mollusks and worms. You would love to know some facts about turtles, as they are very interesting animals.
Turtles are the only reptiles in the world that usually migrate very long distances, more specifically the marine species of turtles which are able to travel up to thousands of kilometers. Here are 10 interesting facts about turtles that will amaze you.
1. Turtles Are As Ancient As Dinosaurs
Turtles are one of the most fascinating creatures in the world and their origin dates back to the time of the dinosaurs, which is more than 200 million years ago.
2. Turtles Can Be Found Everywhere
Turtles are usually very adaptive and can survive in almost any condition. They can be found on every continent on our planet except Antarctica. However, most turtle species are found in south-eastern North America and South Asia.
3. Turtles Can Live For More Than 100 Years
Turtles usually have the longest lifespans among the reptile family – they are one of the most long-lived members of the reptile family. Most turtle species that are kept as pets usually live from 10 to 80 years.
However, sea turtles and larger land turtles can live for more than 100 years. Various records show that there are some turtles that lived for more than 150 years.
4. What A Turtle Eats, Depends On The Environment
What a turtle eats usually depends on the environment it lives in. Land-dwelling turtles will consume a variety of insects, beetles, fresh fruit, grass, and vegetation. However, sea turtles will eat everything from algae to squid and jellyfish.
But unfortunately, this has created some serious problems for marine-based turtles or sea turtles in recent years, as they can easily mistake single-use plastic bags for transparent jellyfish and it can become the reason for their death when the bags become stuck in their digestive system.
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5. Turtles Are One Of The Oldest Reptile Groups
Turtles belong to one of the oldest reptile groups in the world – they are significantly older than snakes, crocodiles, and alligators.
6. Turtles Can Be Carnivorous, Herbivorous, And Omnivorous
Some turtles are carnivorous (meat-eating), others are herbivorous (plant-eating) and some turtles are omnivorous (eating both meat and plants). Most baby turtles start life as carnivorous but grow to eat more plants and become omnivorous as they mature.
7. A Lot Of Turtle Species Are Endangered
Many species of turtle are endangered today. According to the IUCN, approximately 129 of the total 300 species of turtle and tortoise around the world are either vulnerable, endangered, or critically endangered and the threats include loss of habitat and poaching.
8. Turtles Can’t Live Without Their Shells
As opposed to popular belief, turtles can’t leave their shells or cannot get out of their shells. They actually can’t live without their shells. Turtles are born with their shells and as the turtle grows, their shells slowly get bigger.
Their shells are actually fused parts of their body and function both as their skin and rib cage. Without their shells, a turtle would not survive at all.
9. Turtle’s Body Temperature Depends On The Environment
Turtles are cold-blooded animals which means that their internal temperature varies with their direct environment and they cannot produce their own body heat. Like many other reptiles, a turtle’s body temperature depends on its environment or they usually rely on external heat sources to maintain their body temperature.
Because of that, they try to keep their body temperature at a steady level by staying in the water or by keeping their body exposed to the sun.
10. Some Turtle Species Can Sleep Underwater
Many turtle species are able to sleep underwater but there are some species that can’t do so. They also can be found sleeping while floating on the surface of the water.
These are 10 interesting facts about turtles.
FAQ: 10 Interesting Facts About Turtles
Here I have given brief answers to some of the most relevant questions about turtles.
Q1. How Long Does A Turtle Live?
Ans: Most turtle species that are kept as pets generally live from 10 to 80 years. Sea turtles and larger land turtles can live for more than 100 years. Turtles are one of the most long-lived members of the reptile family.
Q2. Is Turtle Omnivorous Or Carnivorous?
Ans: Some turtles are carnivorous, some are herbivorous and others are omnivorous (eating both meat and plants).
Q3. Why Can’t Turtles Leave Their Shells?
Ans: Their shells are actually fused parts of their body and function both as their skin and rib cage and turtles would not survive without their shells.
Q4. Can Turtles Sleep In water?
Ans: Many turtle species are able to sleep underwater, however, some species can’t do so. They can also sleep while floating on the surface of the water.
Q5. What Do All Turtles Eat?
Ans: Land-dwelling turtles will consume a variety of insects, beetles, fresh fruit, and grass and sea turtles will eat everything from algae to squid and jellyfish.
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