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What are the differences between tortoise and turtle?

Some Tortoises and Turtles can be keep as a cute pet turtle. They are from the Chelonian family but tortoise dwells well on land while turtles dwell well in the water. But if we talk about the classification families, they are different.

differences between tortoise and turtle
differences between tortoise and turtle

Tortoises and turtles are each reptile from the order of Testudines, however in different classification families. The fundamental difference between the two is that tortoises dwell on land, whilst turtles live in the water some or almost all of the time.

The bodies of tortoises and turtles are each shielded by way of a shell, the upper section of which is called a carapace, with the decrease portion, referred to as a plastron. The carapace and the plastron are attached by using a bridge, which potential that even though the head and limbs of a turtle or tortoise may be withdrawn from the shell, the total body can in no way be definitely detached from it. These reptiles are typically reclusive and shy in nature.

Comparison chart between Turtle and Tortoise

DefinitionA Tortoise is a reptile from the Chelonian family and dwells well on land.A Turtle is a reptile from the Chelonian family and dwells well in the water.
OrderTestudines (a.k.a., Chelonii)Testudines (a.k.a., Chelonii)
DistributionTortoise mostly founded in Asia and Africa but some species tortoise exist in AmericaAfrica, America.
The shape of the shellMostly large dome-shaped shells (with bumps on the top in some species).Mostly flat, streamlined shells(In order to swim)
Weight of the shellHeavier.Light-weight in general
LimbsFeet are short and sturdy with bent legs.Webbed feet with long claws.
DietMost are herbivores, but some species prefer live food.Eats fruits, veggies, leafy vegetation and meat, hence they are omnivores.
BirthTortoise hatchlings move from their nest to the mother’s burrow soon after birth.Turtle hatchlings stay in their nest on their own for 90-120 days.
Lifespan80-150 years. The longest living of tortoise is 326 years.20-40 years. The oldest was 86 years.
(There is document says that oldest turtle was 182 years but no one confirmed that)
FamilyTestudinidaeNumerous families, which include Carettochelyidae (pig-nosed turtle), Dermatemydidae (Central American river turtles), Emydidae (pond/water turtles), etc.

All Tortoises Are Turtles?

All Tortoises Are Turtles?
All Tortoises Are Turtles?

The is article says: all tortoise are turtles with the explanation is: If you look at the larger picture, all turtles are reptiles with a shell. And therefore all tortoises are turtles–in the broadest sense of the word. However, in the smaller scope of things, when you divide the larger category into three different types, you see that a turtle is not necessarily a tortoise or even a turtle, because it can be a terrapin instead.

The author says that the shell of the tortoise belongs to turtles’s shell, well, I don’t 100% agree on that. But the signal is kind of the same with what we have here.

They are particularly distinguished from other turtles by being land-dwelling, while many (though not all) turtle species are at least partly aquatic. However, like other turtles, tortoises have a shell to protect from predation and other threats. The shell in tortoises is generally hard, and like other members of the suborder Cryptodira, they retract their necks and heads directly back into the shell to protect them. — Wikipedia


I am not going to making a war that all tortoises are turtles? I am not a scientist. My blog only wants to show you the differences between turtles and tortoises in general. Then you can have the right view on what pet you are having and how to care and breeding it well.

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