Male vs Female Turtles
Sexing of animals becomes one of the most difficult tasks when it comes to the turtles as they show very slight external changes between them. This difficulty is serious when the turtles are young. However, there are many internal changes between male and female turtles, yet those are unable to observe externally. Therefore, it would be important to know about the exhibited slight differences between males and females, laid out in this article that have been extracted from expert sources published around the world.
With the presence of the male reproductive system, the male turtles are members of any turtle species that provide paternal genes for the next generation of the particular species. Usually, the males become sexually matured after about five years from the birth. An adult male turtle differs in size depending on the species. They grow large as they age and the males are usually smaller in size than a female of the same age; thus, the weight is also lesser in males than the opposite sex. This weight difference may be useful for the aquatic turtles, viz. sea turtles, as the male would imply a small weight on the female during copulation; hence, the female could maintain her balance in the water. The shape of the bottom shell, aka the plastron, is concave in male turtles. This shape is very useful for the male to maintain his balance during copulation, as it fits to the convex shape of the top shell of female turtle. The cloaca of the males is located slightly away from the body on the underside of the tail. The tail of the male turtle is long and flat. The claws of male turtles, especially land turtles or tortoises, are long and prominent in the forelegs. Their long claws in the forelegs are very useful to hold the female tightly during mating. In some species, the males tend to be having reddish or brighter colours than the opposite sex that could attract more females to them; e.g. American Box Turtle.
Female turtles are members of any turtle species with the main responsibilities of producing ova and laying eggs after mating, as they have the most important female reproductive system to sustain the existence of their being. After the sexual maturity at about five years of age, the females grow at a slightly higher rate than the males do. Therefore, females are usually heavier than males of the same age. The location of the cloaca would be very important to notice, as it indicates the females from males. The cloaca of the female turtles is located at the underside of the tail in general and very close to the body in particular. Therefore, the male cloaca, which is located slightly away from the body, can be easily brought upon it during copulation. The shape of the female plastron, bottom shell is convex, which aids in storing a large number of eggs. Some species of turtles, such as American Box Turtle, do not have bright colours for the females. It would be important to state that the female turtles (sea turtles) dig a large hole in the beach and lay her eggs before closing it, and make some extra holes to distract the predators from the actual eggs.
What is the difference between Male and Female Turtles?
• Females are larger and heavier than males of the same age.
• Males have a concave plastron while the females have a convex plastron.
• The cloaca is located slightly away from the body in males, but it is found very close to body in females.
• The tail is flat and longer in males than in females.
• Males of some species have longer claws in forelegs than in females.
• Some male turtles are brightly coloured compared to the females’ dull colourations of the top shell.