9 things you never knew about tortoises

9 things you never knew about tortoises

Nottinghamshire has been named as one of the UK’s stolen tortoise capital.

So we decided to bring you nine quirky facts you may not know about the gorgeous reptiles.

1. Tortoises have been on the earth for more than 200 million years. They evolved before mammals, birds, crocodiles, snakes and even lizards.

2. A tortoise’s shell is made up of 60 different bones, which are all connected to each other.

3. Tortoises are cold-blooded – they draw heat from their environment and are more active during the day than at night.

4. Tortoises hibernate in the winter time and before they do, they starve themselves so their stomachs are empty ready for hibernation.

Piper McKenzie feeds a 45-year-old sulcata tortoise at White Post Farm

5. The oldest Giant tortoise ever recorded lived to the ripe old age of 152.

6. In the 19th century, sailors used to eat the tortoises found on the Galapagos Islands because it was one of the only source of fresh meat they had on long voyages.

7. Tortoises are different to turtles because they only live on land and do not have flippers like turtles do.

8. Baby tortoises hatch out of eggs which the female buries underground.

9. Tortoises mostly eat vegetation, but sometimes take meat if they come across it.