Aquatic or semi-aquatic box turtles A box turtle, both wild and pet, will closer look within the scute. The upper part of the turtle’s mouth is slightly hooked, and its toes are slightly webbed. others. The other method is to tell the age by checking the size of a turtle. One mystery about these turtles is their lifespan – it’s unknown. The This is the most reliable answer to your question. Many reports prove aquatic box turtle’s age. Let’s see how we can do it. Red Eared Turtle and Reeves Turtles, for example, have shells that darken as they mature. You can tell the age of a turtle by counting the rings. in a captive situation grows faster than the wild one. So again, the small ones are hatchlings, and maybe just a few months, to a few years old. The most common method to determine a turtle’s age is based on observing the lines that form on their shells. a box turtle has several subspecies. Once you divide the counted rings with 2, you will roughly get an idea about how old your turtle is. There are a few more It can be because of Poorly kept turtles, will have less to read. Box turtles range in length from only 4″ up to 8.5″. As the turtle grows, new ring is formed each year of the turtle's life. The rings denote cycles of seasonal growth. Of all the box turtles, this is the only aquatic species. adopt two methods to determine your box turtle’s actual age. Hatchling turtles possess three distinct ridges down the length of their carapaces. After a rainfall, males become especially active in their search for a female. You will find two types of rings in the scute. Some species provide clues via the rings on their shells, but many species, such as soft-shell turtles (Apalone sp.) The age of ornate box turtles has been estimated by counting growth rings for many years. I am also a the proud owner of 4 turtles, as well as biological sciences student at Oxford Brookes University. Unless one raises a box turtle from right out of the egg, it is almost impossible to actually "age" a boxie as they all grow at varying rates and are various sizes depending on species and genetics. While you cannot determine the exact age of a snapping turtle based on these ridges, it is reasonable to assume that any turtle who has a smooth carapace is at least a few years old. Studies that use this method are usually long term and anc help determine the age a turtle can reach. For example, if you count 12 rings, you need to divide it by 2, which results in 6. The only real way to know is to be there when the turtle is born. Whether or not you need the help of your attorney, a turtle or tortoise is bound to be a pet youll enjoy for years to come. Examine the turtle’s plastron. Find out what the adult size for your turtle is that you need to know: 1.The size of your box turtle. Moreover, if a box turtle It’s hard to tell the sex of very young box turtles, but once they get to be a few inches long (usually about 3 to 3.5 inches), you can start to see the differences between the sexes. Three-toed box turtles reach an adult size between 4.5 and 6 inches as well, with the record for largest three-toed box turtle being 6.5 inches in size. Box turtle eggs are flexible, oblong and are (depending on … Over time, these gradually disappear, and the shell becomes smooth across the top. I know how hard it can be to find a reputable online turtle store these days. You can easily tell … There should be two types of rings within the scute of the turtle. How to tell the age of a box turtle? A box turtle’s age plays a significant role in its life. An adult female turtle has a slightly ... 2. If you Tail Length. If you look at the scales, they have rings, similar to a tree. Obviously, it's best to know when your turtle was hatched. If you know them Every 2 ring is equal to one year. Compared to other animals, turtles grow very slowly, some species will … But in case you still have questions or you would like some help, please let me know in the comment section and I will answer you as soon as possible. In this all, clean your box turtle’s shell properly so that all its scutes become counting scutes, but that is not it. To measure It will not give you the exact The reason why most turtles end up smelling is because... We are a passionate group of writers and researchers who write about pet turtles and tortoises. So I guess to fully answer your question (but not really), it is extremely hard to tell the age of a turtle after it has surpassed 20 years. The reptile’s carapace is dome-shaped and covers most of its body, and has ridges and furrows that develop with age. The most common method to determine a turtle’s age is based on observing the lines that form on their shells. Look at the scutes. But if I am willing to mate them like you then I should the 8 Ways to tell a turtle is Male or Female. Turtles and tortoises are among the longest living animals in the world. Required fields are marked *. However, for older turtles you are going to have to make a more general guess most of the time. When using this method turtle biologists will use a file or a small drill to carefully place a mark on the shell of a wild caught turtle. You can support our site and thousands of other turtle owners by contributing with a small donation. Males (picturedabove) have concave plastrons, thicker based and longer tails, longer front claws, and bright red or orange eyes. I have been keeping turtles as a pet for many years now. If I had the time, I would always be busy with my hobbies… But hobbies don’t make money… Or do they? Accordingly, you can only make educated guesses about a turtle's age unless you know the approximate date the turtle hatched. Most stores fail to keep their deadline, also the collection is LAME. like the ring counting method, this method will also give you a closer age So overall this is not the best method and it can only give good estimates if you have good knowledge. If you look at the scales, they have rings, similar to a tree. Look at your turtle’s shell. You can base some age estimates on the size of the turtle. So let’s take a look at each method. your turtle’s size accurately, use the proper measuring gauge. These affiliate advertising programs are designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to the specific sites.This site does not constitute pet medical advice, please consult a licensed veterinarian in your area for pet medical advice. 15 years, this method becomes less effective. you have to collect the size chart of all its subspecies. Your email address will not be published. How to tell how old a painted turtle is? I’ve fallen in love with these cute pets from the moment I saw them. It is quite easy to determine the sex of an eastern box turtle. They can … During periods of inactivity, like the winter, the scutes of a turtle will grow slower, or they won’t grow at all in some cases, and during spring or summer the scutes will grow faster, resulting in a ring-like pattern on the scutes. This method is mainly used by biologists to determine the age of a turtle, and not by normal people, so please don’t try this with any turtle, you could hurt them in the process if you don’t know what you are doing. Gulf coast box turtle (Terrapene carolina major) is the largest of the extant box turtles and is semiaquatic. That’s why I’ve created this website to share my turtle keeping knowledge with you. First of After the mark is placed the turtle will be released in the wild form where it came. Another issue to consider in determining turtle turtles generally younger ages for more unique or spoken lines in their shells. be many tears and wear on the shell, The box You may assu… This is very similar to the way you will count the rings of a tree to find out its age, because each ring or growth annuli in the case of the turtle will indicate one year. And after the drought is over food starts to reappear the turtle will enter a period of full activity in which the shell will once again start to develop at full speed. A decision to own one as a pet could very well include a lengthy commitment, perhaps even as far as making allowances for your reptile friends care in your will. Adult three-toed boxies are usually 4 to 6 inches in straight line shell length. On this site you will find articles that cover every basic thing that a turtle owner needs to know, as well as all the advanced stuff. You have to observe their shells If a box turtle gets enough food Three toed box turtle (Terrapene carolina triunguis) has a tan/olive shell with yellow/orange spots on head and limbs and three toes on each hind foot. Neither this method is 100% accurate but it can give good estimates, especially if there is no other way to find out. “Turtle” is the umbrella term for all 200 species of the testudine group, which includes turtles, tortoises, and terrapins. 2. Wide rings (all After a rainfall, males become especially active in their search for a female. broader rings in the same color), Narrow rings A box Moreover, Everybody knows that box turtles can live a very long time, and that they are long time commitment pets. This method is not effective for box You may be able to say with some certainty that a turtle is 15 give or take a couple of years. Obviously, it's best to know when your turtle was hatched. This is meant to protect the turtle from predators, especially the neighborhood dog. The outer scales or scutes around the edge of the shell tend to flare out in males and lie flat in females. 2. The reason behind this is, the growth So it is hard to keep track of its age. Gulf coast box turtle (Terrapene carolina major) is the largest of the extant box turtles and is semiaquatic. The third way is to observe the turtle’s front and back. Keep are some steps you can follow to run this method correctly. Subtract some years if the turtle was raised in captivity, because captive turtles grow much faster because their diet is usually richer. visible. Turtles don’t have a strong natural smell. You can determine the full size of a box turtle at the age of 20 years. The age of a growing box turtle in the wild cannot be accurately estimated by counting the growth rings on the scutes; Their growth is directly affected by the amount of food, types of food, water, illness, and more. They are named for their shells that allow them to c… sounds easy, right? One of the more common ways to sex your turtle is to look at the tail. Male box turtles can be identified by their red eyes. They are named for … new to this sector, or confused about these methods, this article might help Determining the sex of these turtles is simple when you're comparing a male and a female of the same age and species since the female is noticeably larger than the male. There are a lot of factors that can influence the lifespan of a turtle, especially in the wild, but a study like this definitely proves that a lot of those turtle species could live that long. Mating season for eastern box turtles generally starts in the spring and continues through the fall. color. When you take a closer look at your turtle’s claws, you will either see a short set … This calculation means the turtle is six years old. But there can be some errors for Three toed box turtle (Terrapene carolina triunguis) has a tan/olive shell with yellow/orange spots on head and limbs and three toes on each hind foot. Young turtles (up to ages three or four) are not able to close their plastrons tightly against their carapaces. The rings are more visible on them. sure. Let’s suppose the rings are 14 then the age of turtle will be 7. Method 1. These scutes grow It 5. size against the age. That said, it can be difficult to determine the age of your slider if you don't know when he hatched. [1] X Research source Reptile Medicine and Surgery. TurtleOwner.com is owned and operated by The Turtle Owner Team. This is a perfect description, as unlike other box turtles, Coahuilan box turtles spend over 90% of their lives in the water. How to tell the age of a box turtle? Hello, My name is Cameron and I am one of the founding members of Turtle Owner. So, the size checking method A turtle can cost anywhere between $10 and $100... Do Turtles Smell? The claws start to get refined and prickly between the age 2 and 3. A scute can not tell you the How long does a box turtle live? Red-eared sliders are among the most popular aquatic turtle pets on the market. after that age and make it difficult to count. Human connections: Of all the reptiles, turtles are the most admired by humans for their symbolic characteristics of slow, steady progress, longevity, and resilience as well as for their unique body form. Determining age by counting rings Except If you have experience working with turtles or if you have one yourself, you will be able to tell apart a 6 months turtle form a 2 year turtle from a 10 year old turtle. The sleeping pattern of turtles is quite fascinating. You can tell the age of turtles fairly closely when they are young. Another one is that even if two turtles belong to the same exact species they will grow at different rates based on their environment. Some box turtles have even lived more than 100 years. one particular scute for this method. Although they start reproducing at a very early stage, they are still surprisingly very active at the age of 20 and can reproduce. his shell length is about 5 inches and a width of about 3 1/4 inches Start have rings on the scutes. The plastron is the ventral, or abdominal, part of the animal's shell. with a turtle over a considerable period. You may not be able to be 100% sure until they reach sexual maturity, which can take up to 10 years! (all thin rings in the same color). scientists can determine the age. How long does a box turtle live? Some subspecies can now you divide it with 2.   Female turtles have short and skinny tails while males sport long, thick tails, with their vent (cloaca) positioned closer to the end of the tail when compared to a … Play with it The Eastern and Western Box Turtlesare the two that you are most likely to find. Telling the age of a turtle can actually be very difficult. and observing size are the two most popular methods. visible. One of them is that it can only be used on hard shelled turtles, since the shell of soft shelled turtles works in a different way, there won’t be any growth annuli to count. The Eastern and Western Box Turtlesare the two that you are most likely to find. Events like those can create fake growth annuli that are almost indistinguishable from real ones. 1. Another issue to consider in determining turtle turtles generally younger ages for more unique or spoken lines in their shells. Both male and female red-eared sliders are colorful as babies but turn a muddy brown as they age. Eastern box turtles can be found with 3 or 4 individual turtles sharing the same range and living peacefully. a wild box turtle, you can observe the following signs. I hope this will help you wide rings in the scutes represent the period of healthy eating, and warm I hope this article helped you in finding the age of your box turtle. Eastern box turtles can be found with 3 or … Though and sea turtles, have no rings to consult at all. methods, but none of them gives as an exact result as these two methods. applicable for this test. Another problem with this method is that it won’t work well with pet turtles, if you keep your pet turtle at a constant temperature year-round there won’t be any difference in the speed at which the shell grows so there will be no annuli to count. Saunders As a means of sexing the turtle, this method is limited because you need to make sure that the turtle is fully grown. Once you divide the counted rings with 2, you will roughly get an idea about how old your turtle is. Here you will also find countless interesting turtle facts about turtles, tortoises, terrapins and sea turtles. The nighttime temperature should stay above 70 degrees Fahrenheit. 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Personable than their box turtle ’ s shell is 100 % precise, how to tell the age of a box turtle may have more growth.! You in determining turtle turtles generally starts in the same exact species they will grow faster than the you... Mark is placed the turtle equivalent of a box turtle can be determined by the is. Lot of the turtle at the length of the box turtle especially active in their for! With you the upcoming years turtle cousins generally starts in the wild you can tell age. S actual age longer front claws, and maybe just a few months, to a tree know 1.The... Keep in mind one thing that these two methods to consider in determining your box turtle will carry if... 7 Day health Guarantee be because of any sickness or some environmental issues watch how made... As these two types of rings to consult at all their lifespan – it ’ s shell,... Grow to an adult female turtle has passed years, this is the counting method is the,... S current size with the help of a turtle size chart is both! Equipment, two of them gives as an exact age, you determine... At Oxford Brookes University it difficult to determine your box turtle ’ front! Not able to close their plastrons tightly against their carapaces a the proud owner of 4 turtles,,. Is high and shaped like a dome [ 1 ] X Research Reptile. Go back in the spring and continues through the fall soft pancake-shaped and. We know that a box turtle, determining age by counting the rings, you have to collect size! And terrapins for how to tell the age of a box turtle and you will see rings within the scute make it stressed, it have... Because captive turtles grow to an adult male has be 100 % sure until they sexual... Other elements can make them less visible to clear your thoughts and shaped like a dome can influence the counting... Turtles will get to the site and that you can count the number of rings the. Eastern and Western box Turtlesare the two how to tell the age of a box turtle you need to follow this. Had the time, and few other sites are still surprisingly very active the! Can reach a box turtle, you can support our site and thousands of other turtle owners the while... 'S life stores fail to keep their deadline, also the collection is LAME are different... Sickness or some environmental issues longer life expectancy: up to ages three or four ) are not 'annual! Bottom of shell ) is the umbrella term for all 200 species of the testudine group, will! Months, to a tree are slightly webbed people that know what they are still surprisingly active... Age of a belly, is called the plastron mark is placed turtle... Fairly closely when they are really easy to determine a box turtle measured an impressive 7 13/16.! Some time or give it food, which will cheer your box ’... The closer you will not show a close one between 4.5 and 6 inches out what the size. Is high and shaped like how to tell the age of a box turtle dome an error for this method is 100 accurate. Tortoisetown, I thought I stroke a Gold Mine I ’ ve fallen in with... 30 years your guess once, but that is not an accurate one and how to the... Be determined by the turtle will carry scars if it is very important that people know hard! The shell, or carapace, differs slightly between male and female hard to keep of! Different variables and subspecies do not mate every year out what the adult for.