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Turtles

Turtles are water-dwelling reptiles with a characteristic cartilaginous or bony shell which acts as an armor. They are one of the most ancient among reptiles, dating further back than even crocodiles. There are 327 extant species of turtles scattered all over the world.

Diet, Reproduction, and Adaptation

Turtles eat aquatic vegetation, worms, insects, snails and even scavenge on dead marine creatures on occasions. They reproduce by laying eggs (oviparous), and for some species of turtles, the temperature at which the egg is kept determines the gender of the offspring. The female lays the eggs in sand or mud and covers them up, leaving them to incubate by themselves. The dorsal side of the turtle’s shell is called the carapace while the shell covering the belly is called the plastron. This shell acts as a strong armor against predators, as the turtle can tuck itself into its shell when it senses danger.

Interesting Fact

Most species of turtles are highly endangered, with some being at the brink of extinction.

Loggerhead Turtle
Florida Box Turtle
Common Box Turtle
Pig-nosed Turtle
Common Snapping Turtle
Three-toed Box Turtle
Leatherback Sea Turtle
Eastern Box Turtle
Alligator Snapping Turtle
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