12 Lesser Known Facts About Turtles That Will Definitely Surprise You

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Turtles are one of the oldest species on the earth. They are also t aa high risk of extinction because of their capture for pets, medicines, cosmetics and more. There are certain about them that you might not know and they may completely surprise you.

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12 lesser known facts about turtles that will definitely surprise you.

1. Although a lot of people think that a turtle’s shell is made up of a single solid shield, it is not true. It will surprise you that they actually made up of around 50 different bones. It looks like a single structure because of the fusion of its vertebrae and ribs.

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2. Turtles are one of the oldest reptiles in the world. They beat snakes, crocodiles and alligators by a fairly large margin. They have been existing since around 200 million years ago. Their existence can be dated back to the time of dinosaurs.

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3. They rock a unique cartilaginous shell which acts like a protective casing for them. Some turtles can also tuck their head inside the shell. It gives them extra protection. 

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4. There is a common myth that turtles can come out of their shell. A lot of cartoons have shown this. However, this is not true. They cannot remove themselves entirely from their shell.

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5. When turtles pull their head into their shell for extra protection, their spine actually bends in this manner.

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6. A lot of turtle shells have a joint that enables it to pull the two parts together which allows it to retract its body inside. It basically acts as a hinge.

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7. Turtles are not actually armor. Inside the shell, they have nerves which supply blood. It the shell gets hit hard by something, it may even bleed and cause the turtle pain.

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8. There is a species of turtle called as the alligator snapping turtle. It can grow up to 2.5 feet long. Also, it weighs around 200 pounds. It has a muscular tail, powerful jaws, sharp beak and deadly claws. 

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9. Although they do not have vocal chords, they can make hissing sounds.

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10. Turtles actually breathe through their butts. In some species, the cloaca is surrounded by a membrane which acts as a medium for gas exchange when a turtle is submerged under water and allow oxygen to reach the blood.

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11. They have a lifespan of over 100 years.

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12. Turtles are not as slow as they are perceived to be.

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