The turtle and tortoise are the animals that belong to the family of reptiles, though some people consider them as similar but definitely, there is a difference between the two.
You need to take care of them so that they can live a happy and stress-free life. In this article, we will discuss the differences between a turtle and a tortoise so that you do not have to face any problem while differentiating the two. There is various difference between the two that will let you know which one is a turtle and which one is tortoise.
Difference between a turtle and a tortoise
There are various differences between a turtle and a tortoise and these differences are listed as below:
- One of the most important and obvious differences between the two is that the turtle spends most of its time in the water while the tortoise is seen spending most of its time on land. This is the most noticeable difference between the two.
- Another difference is that the shells of the tortoise are more rounded and domed-shaped as compared to the turtles. The shells of the turtles are thinner and they have more water shells that are more susceptible to swimming.
- You can even differentiate them on the basis of their eating habits. The turtles are omnivorous in nature while the tortoises are basically herbivores in nature. By their eating habits, you can easily differentiate between the turtle and the tortoise.
- The life span of the turtle is shorter as compared to the tortoises. The turtles usually live up to 20 to 40 years but the tortoise have a longer life span than the turtles. The tortoises live up to 80 to 150 years that is much more than the turtles.
- It is said that not all turtles are tortoises but all tortoises are turtles and the reason is that they all belong to the order Testudines.
- Another noticeable difference between the turtle and the tortoise is that the turtles are generally larger than the tortoises. So by looking at their size you can know the difference.
- The shells of the turtles are lighter than the tortoises. The shells of the tortoises are much heavier than the turtles and are robust in nature.
- As we know that shedding occurs in reptiles so is the case of turtle and tortoise. The turtle sheds their scutes so that they can make room for the new scutes that can grow underneath. On the other hand tortoises basically do not shed scutes from the shells on their body while they grow without the need of shedding and pushes up the older growth which gives the shell of the tortoise a layered look.
- As we know that the turtle appears larger than the tortoises, it clearly means that they are heavier in weight than the tortoises. The turtles can even weigh so high as much as between 300 kg to 700 kg. But the tortoise is lighter in weight as compared to the turtles as they are smaller in size and the largest tortoise weighs up to 250 kg.
- You can also notice the difference between the legs of the turtle and the tortoise. The legs of the turtle are flipper-like or webbed feet so that they can easily cruise through the water. The fore legs of the tortoise are club-like and the hind legs are elephantine which helps them to move around the place and also helps them to carry the extra weight of their body that also easily.
These are some of the major differences between the turtle and the tortoise that differentiate the two from one another. Some differences are easily noticeable and some needs some time and observation to come to notice. So you need to know your turtle or tortoise quite properly so that you can tell the difference between the two.
The turtle and the tortoise for most of the people will appear to be same but they have lots of things that differ and also lots of things that makes them appear similar. By knowing about the both better and also by understanding them nicely you would be able to notice what are the various differences between the two.