Turtle Facts And Information

Turtles are wonderful creatures and many of them are endangered.  I will explore Turtle Facts in the article below.

About – Turtle Facts

Turtles are fascinating creatures.  There are many types of sea turtles and six of the seven species of sea turtles are endangered due to humans.  Some interesting turtle facts show that   These creatures are used to the ocean and adapt well although they need air to survive.  Sea turtles spend their whole lives at sea, except when females come ashore to lay eggs.  These marine reptiles face threats of entanglement, loss of their habitats and loss of their eggs.

Sea Turtles

Turtle Facts And Information

Turtle Facts

Some turtle facts include that the sea turtle species are endangered.  These species are, Leatherback, Green, Loggerhead, Hawksbill, Olive Ridley, Kemp’s Ridley and Flatback.  These ancient creatures have been on our earth for more than 100 million years, even surviving the dinosaurs around 65 million years ago when they became extinct.  Each species eats a different diet.  Greens eat sea grasses, leatherbacks eat jellyfish and soft animals, loggerheads eat crabs and clams and hawksbills eat other invertebrates.  The Kemp’s ridley prefer crabs.

Habitat – Turtle Facts

Sea turtles live in nearly every ocean basin in the world, nesting in subtropical and tropical beaches.  They migrate long distances to feed, often crossing large oceans.  Some fascinating turtle facts include that sea turtles, the leatherbacks species, are capable of withstanding the coldest water temperature, which is often below 40 degrees F.  They are found as far north as Alaska and as far south as Chile.

Shells – Turtle Facts

Some great turtle facts show that their shells stand out and set them apart from all other animals and make them maybe, the most anatomically in interesting of vertebrates.  The shell is actually a modified ribcage and not an exoskeleton as people mistakenly assume.  It cannot be removed and because the shell, the pectoral and pelvic girdles are located within the ribcage.  Interestingly, the limb bones are also changed to accommodate the shell.

Early Fossils – Turtle Facts

The earliest turtles that are known are from the Upper Triassic and they are almost indistinguishable from modern turtles.  In these early fossils, the marginal teeth have already been lost.  There is the presence of a keratin beak.  The elements of the shell are present.  Some exciting turtle facts show that these early fossils, Proganochelys have a big difference to the modern turtles in that the presence of palatal teeth which are lost in the modern species and the inability to retract the head within the shell.

Head Retraction – Turtle Facts

Modern turtles are actually placed into one of two suborders within the Testudines, Peurodira which is side-necked and Cryptodira which is hidden necked.  The name difference between the two is the method of head retraction.  The neck vertebrae flex laterally in pleurodires.  This allows the neck to bend and pull the head in sideways.  In crytodires, the neck vertebrae flex vertically, this allows the head to be drawn straight back within the shell.

Turtle Facts

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Turtle Facts

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