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Turtle vs Tortoise

Well, actually, there’s a meaningful difference between Turtle vs Tortoise. Difference Between Turtles and tortoises are closely related. They are both reptiles from the same family (Testudines or Chelonian). The main key difference between the Turtle vs Tortoise is that turtle is the name given to water-dwellers and tortoise is the name given to land-dwellers. They are easily identified by the presence of a shell, from which their head and limbs protrude.
The bodies of tortoises and turtles are both shielded by a shell, the upper part of which is called carapace, with the lower portion called a plastron. The carapace and the plastron are attached by a bridge, which means that though the head and limbs of a turtle or tortoise may be withdrawn from the shell, the whole body can never be totally detached from it. These reptiles are generally reclusive and shy in nature.

Difference between turtle vs tortoise


What Is The Difference Between Turtle And Tortoise | Turtle vs Tortoise



Turtles are ectotherms—animals commonly called cold-blooded—meaning that their internal temperature varies according to the ambient environment. However, because of their high metabolic rate, leatherback sea turtles have a body temperature that is noticeably higher than that of the surrounding water.
In the United Kingdom, the word turtle is used for water-dwelling species, including ones known in the US as terrapins, but not for terrestrial species, which are known only as tortoises.
Turtles are reptiles and have a hard shell that protects them like a shield, this upper shell is called a ‘carapace’.
Turtles also have a lower shell called a ‘plastron’. Many turtle species (not all) can hide their heads inside their shells when attacked by predators.
One more thing which may surprise you related to turtles is “Turtles have existed for around 215 million years.”


Do you know? which is the largest turtle?

The largest turtle is the leatherback sea turtle, it can weigh over 900 kg! (2000 lb) and
Turtles lay eggs.


Sea turtles have special glands which help remove salt from the water they drink.



Tortoises are the longest living land animal in the world, although the longest living species of tortoise is a matter of debate.
Tortoises are shielded from predators by a shell. The top part of the shell is the carapace, the underside is the plastron, and the two are connected by the bridge.
The carapace is fused to both the vertebrae and ribcage, and tortoises are unique among vertebrates in that the pectoral and pelvic girdles are inside the ribcage rather than outside. Tortoises can vary in dimension from a few centimeters to two meters. They are usually diurnal animals with tendencies to be crepuscular depending on the ambient temperatures. Tortoises are generally reclusive animals.
Most species of tortoises lay small clutch sizes, seldom exceeding 20 eggs, and many species have clutch sizes of only 1-2 eggs.


Do You Know? Which Is The Longest Living Tortoise?

An Aldabra giant tortoise named Adwaita may have been the longest living at an estimated 356 years. In general, most tortoise species can live 80–150 years.


Comparison Chart: Turtle vs Tortoise


Difference Turtle Tortoise
turtle vs tortoise turtle vs tortoise
Scientific name Testudines Testudinidae
Definition A Turtle is a reptile from the Chelonian family and dwells well in the water. A Tortoise is a reptile from the Chelonian family and dwells well on land.
Kingdom Animalia Animalia
Phylum Chordata Chordata
Class Reptilia Reptilia
Order Testudines (a.k.a., Chelonii) Testudines (a.k.a., Chelonii)
Family Numerous families, including Carettochelyidae (pig-nosed turtle), Dermatemydidae (Central American river turtles), Emydidae (pond/water turtles), etc. Testudinidae
Distribution Africa, America. Found mostly in Asia and Africa but some species exist in Americas too.
Shape of the shell Mostly flat, streamlined shells. Mostly large dome shaped shells (with bumps on the top in some species).
Weight of the shell Generally light-weight shell. The shells are heavier.
Limbs Webbed feet with long claws. Feet are short and sturdy with bent legs.
Diet Eats fruits, veggies, leafy vegetation and meat, hence they are omnivores. Most are herbivores, but some species prefer live food.
Birth Turtle hatchlings stay in their nest on their own for 90-120 days. Tortoise hatchlings move from their nest to the mothers burrow soon after birth.
Lifespan 20-40 years. The oldest was 86 years. 80-150 years. The longest living Tortoise is 326 years.


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