Happy World Turtle Day! We’re shellebrating our fine reptilian friends with some turtle fun-facts.
Did you know:
- There are approximately 290 species of turtles and tortoises that inhabit oceans, fresh waters, and land environments.
- Turtles are characterized by two broad bony shells that enclose and protect the body and jaws without teeth that form a beak-like structure.
- Once they enter the sea after hatching, male Hawksbill sea turtles never leave it, and females come out only to lay their eggs.
- Did you know the Museum is helping to preserve the iconic Galápagos tortoise Lonesome George?
- For centuries, ships would load up on Galápagos tortoises to provide fresh meat during sea voyages, one tortoise could provide 200 pounds of meat.
- The Leatherback is the largest turtle, reaching a length of almost 6 feet, while smaller species, such as the Bog turtle, reach a maximum shell length of 4 inches.
- Did you know that two brother African spur-thighed tortoises live in the Museum? Meet Hermes and Mud!
- Softshell turtles, genus Trionyx, have gill-like filaments in their pharynx that serve as respiratory organs.
Stop by the Hall of Reptiles and Amphibians to learn more.