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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for 10 Interesting Facts to Know about Turtles – Illusive Marine Creatures
Joanna James Joanna James
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10 Interesting Facts to Know about Turtles – Illusive Marine Creatures

Turtles are curious creatures and there remains so much that we still don't know about them. Many varieties are at risk of extinction and thus we need to protect these wonderful creatures.


How they differ from tortoises

The two terms can sometimes be confusing, but in fact, the tortoises in a type of turtle. In American usage of English the variant of the reptile found on land is known as a turtle, and the creature found in the water is a water-turtle. The British however call the land creature a tortoise, and the water create a turtle. The biggest difference between the two is thus where they live.


Life span

No one really knows the lifespan of turtles, as they live for longer than research projects usually go on for. Many approximate their life span to be about 80 years, though the larger species could very well live longer, for about 200 years or even more.



Turtles have been around for much longer than many of the other species of animal on earth today. It is approximated that the oldest discovered turtles date back to the Permian Epoch, around 220 million years ago. However, they differed to the turtles we see today in several ways.


Number of species

Between turtles and tortoises, there are about 300 species found across the world. There are however seven types that inhabit the waters, which are spotted at different parts of the world. At reefs around areas like Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas you can spot up to five of these species.


Turtles are at risk

Unfortunately, most varieties of turtles critically endangered. So, when you see turtles during your Luxury Holiday Maldives, appreciate them as they may not be around much longer. You can also play a role in the conservation of these creatures.


Gender of the turtle

While it is still in the egg, the temperatures outside determine the gender of a sea turtle. While the right temperature can result in a balance of males and female, warmer temperatures increase the number of females in a batch and cooler temperatures result in males. Thus global warming can have a significant impact on turtle populations.


Their shells

This isn't just a home into which it can retreat as many people think, it is in fact a part of its skeleton. It is a part of the turtle and grows with it, so don't ever expect a turtle to come out of its shell. These shells provide the turtle protection from predators.


Largest turtle

While the turtles you may have kept as pets were tiny, the larger species can grow to be massive. The largest species is the leatherback turtle, which can grow to be up to even six feet, and weigh up to 2000 pounds.


Staying in the water

Most sea turtles spend their entire life in the water, expect females who come to shore to lay eggs. Though they are born on the land, these creatures head to the sea soon after, where they go on to spend their lives.



Sea turtles need air to breath, so they have to surface to the surface of the ocean to breath occasionally. They can however hold their breath for hours on end, thus allowing them to dive deep into the water.