Posted on May 24, 2022 42
Having appeared on Earth a long time ago, turtles never cease to amaze those who see them for the first time. Slow, encased in strong shells, they are long, and therefore in many cultures are considered a symbol of wisdom. That, however, does not prevent the inhabitants of several countries from eating them, and is so active that some of their species are now on the brink of extinction, and the collection of turtle eggs is severely punishable by law.
1. There are about 330 species in the world today, but once there were many more. Most of them became extinct in times immemorial, and not because of human activity.
2. The first turtles appeared on Earth about 220 million years ago.
3. Some of them lead a predominantly terrestrial lifestyle, while others spend almost all their time in the water.
4. In some countries, fishers catch turtles with a cling-fish. The fish is tied by its tail and thrown into the water, where it finds the turtle and succumbs to its shell from below. Then the bunch is pulled by fishers to the boat or to the shore.
5. Freshwater turtles cannot live in salt water. As, however, and vice versa.
6. Scientists still do not know who was the first ancestor of turtles, and from whom they are descended.
7. The largest modern tortoise is the leatherback. Measuring up to 2.5 meters, it can weigh 800-900 kg.
8. Turtles can cry. Not from emotion, though - this is how they get rid of the excess salt accumulated in the body.
9. The meat of some turtles is poisonous because they feed on poisonous fish or plants. This makes their meat toxic.
10. There are 6 different species of turtles in Russia.
11. The number of eggs laid by the female giant tortoise depends on the size of the population in the place of residence. If there are many turtles and there is competition for food, they will lay a few eggs, but if they need to breed intensively, they will lay 2-2.5 times more.
12. Because turtles can go without water and food for a long time, in the days of sailing ships, sailors often used them as live preserves. As a result, these animals were exterminated on many islands. In the Galapagos alone, about 10 million turtles were exterminated during the 17th and 18th centuries.
13. In the USSR, turtle meat was used for the fattening of fur-bearing animals. About 100,000 Central Asian tortoises were captured annually for this purpose.
14. Most species of turtles are listed in the International Red Book.
15. Turtles live a long time, but the exact timing depends on their species. The officially recorded record for longevity is 188 years.
16. Only brown turtles take care of their young. All other species lay their eggs and forget about them forever.
17. At high ambient temperatures, female turtles hatch from their eggs, while at lower temperatures, male turtles hatch. A similar situation is observed in crocodiles.
18. Female sea turtles (referring to the species) become capable of reproduction only at 27-30 years. Males - a little earlier.
19. Since the body temperature of leatherback turtles is higher than that of all their other relatives, they can live in colder waters. But in this case, they need to feed actively in order to maintain their internal warmth.
20. Adult turtles of some species weigh about 1,500 to 2,000 times more than they did when they were cubs. By comparison, if these proportions were true for humans, an adult could reach a weight of 7-8 tons.
21. At low temperatures, the activity of these animals decreases and their movements become sluggish.
22.The slowest tortoise is the giant tortoise. On land, it moves at a speed of less than 0.4 km/h.
23. There is an officially recorded case where a turtle starved for almost 5 years, but survived.
24. One of the strongest animals is green sea turtles. They can carry on their backs as many people as placed on its shell, that is four or five.
25. Turtles are one of the few animals that remember people by sight and distinguish them.
26. Like birds, they navigate on long journeys according to the magnetic field of the planet.
27. The number of eggs a female can lie at one time is directly related to her size. The older and larger she is, the more eggs she can lay.
28. Slow on land, in water, some turtles can develop an impressive speed - up to 35 km/h.