Turtles and tortoises are very gentle and peaceful animals that I find to be very pleasant to watch as they roam around and explore the ground for edible matter. Turtles and tortoises both have shells, and they use those shells for protection from predators and protection from other turtles and tortoises. These shells are hard, made of bone, and covered in a keratin cover called a "scute". Some turtle and tortoise species have evolved to be incredibly large and therefore have incredibly huge shells. Like, really huge!
Here is a list of some turtle and tortoise species with really large shells.
- African Spur Thigh Tortoise
- Galapagos Tortoise
- Aldabra Tortoise
- Yellow Foot Tortoise
- Green Sea Turtle
- Olive Ridley Sea Turtle
- Leatherback Sea Turtle
- Giant Softshell Turtle
Now, there are a lot of other turtle and tortoise species, in fact there are currently around 350 identified species! The largest of the turtle species being the Leatherback Sea Turtle who can weigh in at 2,000 lbs when full grown. The largest of the tortoise species is the Galapagos Tortoise who can weigh over 900 lbs when full grown. Learn more about island gigantism here! Both of these reptiles are massive and we have lots of turtle and tortoise fact sheets if you want to learn more about these giant reptiles! Or take the turtle or a tortoise quiz to test your knowledge on the difference between the two.
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