turtle without shell

Table Of Content

  • Introduction
  • Habitat of turtle
  • Migrations
  • Reproductive phase
  • Population threat
Introduction :

turtle habitat

The word Turtle has been derived from the order of reptiles known as “Testudines”, which has been originated as per the structure of the turtle skeleton. Turtles are cold-blooded and omnivores reptiles, and they can be easily identifiable due to their bony shell which has been developed all-around their body. and not only hard shell, there are some softshell turtle too which are known as turtle without shell. The turtle shell is hard in nature, mostly which provide them protection in not getting hunted by their predator or becoming turtle food to any marine species.

Some of the turtles also have softshell and softshell turtle are very rare to found in seas and oceans The shell of such softshell turtle is made from the soft tissue or cartilage which is present inside their backbones hence their edges are too soft and slippery due to the absence of few set bones.

These turtles come in different shapes and sizes, such as softshell turtle without shell, which has very thin skin or shell over their body. They can vary from a size of 2.5ft to 6.0ft. Their bony cage or structure of bones is the part of their body. The turtle shell is inseparable from their body as it is attached to their body, and they can’t even shed their turtle shell like a snake. So, a turtle without shell can’t be able to live or survive in the ocean. They live their entire life packed within it.

The top part of the turtle shell has given the name of carapace, while the lower part of the turtle shell is known as plastron. The lowermost surface of the softshell turtle is developed from the turtle skeleton, and it is generally made up of keratin and dead skin cells, which further develop into the turtle skeleton. In the following article, we will be covering some stats about the marine turtle in regard to their habitat, migration, reproduction, and the population threat which is hovering over their head.

Habitat of Turtle Without Shell

turtle without shell

Turtles, in particular, are marine animals, i.e., Reptilia equipped with webbed feet and a streamlined body. Turtles have been found in most of the continents in both salt and fresh water. Freshwater turtle such as box turtle, mud turtle and turtle without shell or the softshell turtle usually live under lakes and ponds. They spend most of their lives underwater, but at times they even come out of the water bodies and take some rest at rock and log of wood to absorb the heat of the sun and the sense of smell and vision in turtles under the water is excellent.

Turtles are usually carnivores as they have extremely powerful jaws, shaped like a beak, not a set of teeth via which they can rip out the meat of their prey; generally, small fish and insects are their primary turtle food. There are some turtles too who feeds upon Aquarius plants, seagrasses and their matter turtle food.

These marine creatures respire under extreme cold season as most of the turtles, especially leatherback and softshell turtle without shell, are found in lagoons, shallows, wetlands and estuaries. They are well inhabited under the water, but still, they are in need of air for survival. Though Turtles are marine animals, that doesn’t mean they can’t survive on land.

Most of the species of turtles are found in the large water bodies of North America and South Asia, but they mostly inhabit tropical and subtropical seas. Some species like the green sea turtle, softshell aka turtle without shell and mud turtle are only found in small geographical places.

The mud turtle is considered to be a marine turtle, but it stills spends the hottest weather in captivity or dormancy. Mud turtle is entirely terrestrial species, and moist and humus forests are the preferable places for mud turtle. There is mud turtle, too, which are also found under the ponds and streams.

They can make movement on land, too, but their movement is too slow, all due to the weight of their heavy turtle shell that they carry on their back forever. The average weight of the turtle is somewhere between 100 pounds to 1100 pounds, and 90% of the mass comprises turtle shell and turtle skeleton. But not all turtle are heavy in masses and weight, there are some turtle too exist which are small in size and light in body weight such as softshell turtle which was also given a title of turtle without shell. And their weight varies as per various types of species which are found under the sea.


turtle without shell

Sea turtles are high tier migratory marine reptiles. Some turtles do the migration along with the coast or some general areas primarily for turtle food habits as they tend to stay near to their home. And there are some species of turtle like too which migrate long like softshell turtle or turtle without shell which travel great distance in searches of their turtle food like seagrass and small fishes found nearly coral reef, at times they even cross the entire oceans.

In the migration season, these sea creature covers a huge amount of distance for the purpose of nesting near the shore of the sea or ocean. And nesting season happens to take place at different times all around the continents.

As turtles are oviparous animals, so during the time of migration, the female turtles came out of the sea to lay eggs on the land surface or beach. There is no involvement of male turtles in laying turtle eggs during the nesting phase. They do not come near to the land in the nesting season; instead, they just slowly crawl towards the sea as the tiny hatchlings.

Generally, sea turtles first find a place, then the turtle eggs laying stage begins; afterwards, they dig the nest into the sand and beach dirt. When they are done with digging, they lay their eggs and bury the turtle eggs with sand.

There would be no taking care of the turtle eggs or maternal care as the female turtle go straight back to sea after it has done with the nesting. Commonly, the turtles lay around 60 – 110 turtle eggs in one go, and the size and structure of the turtle eggs are spherical and elongated in shape.

It usually takes around 80- 120 days, after which turtle eggs start to hatch, and baby turtles come out of the soft shell of the eggs. At first, these juvenile turtles are born with delicate skin all over the turtle skeleton; they almost look like a turtle without shell as they have no such developed shell. They are more of a mud turtle as they are covered with sand all over their body; when they come out of their nest and slowly, the softshell turtle becomes adult and develops a more rigid shell. And it came out in research that the temperature of the sand determines the genders of the turtle eggs and whether they were going to be male or female turtles.

The rate of survival of turtle eggs is comparatively low, and only a few got the opportunity to live last long.


turtle without shell

Sea turtles are ancient creatures that have been on this globe for more than 80 million years. At some places, people worship these sacred creatures, and on the other hand, people do trade and exploit these magnificent marine animals just for the sake of turtle food in demand. Especially, people like to eat those species of turtle which have very soft skin, which makes them easily to tear apart. One such species of turtle is softshell turtle, these types of turtles equipped with a delicate, skinny and sticky shell which brought them the name of ‘turtle without shell’.

In the past decades, the demand for turtle eggs, turtle shell, turtle skeleton and meat has been increased. So, people began to hunt more of these animals and then slaughtered them for sale in the market. Every single species of sea turtle suffers from over-exploitation and poaching due to their high, increasing demand for turtle food and turtle eggs in most countries.

China is one such country where the demand for these marine animals is increasing day by day. People over there mainly use them in making medicines and consume them as food too. Turtle food is a delicacy there.

These ill-practices have now turned many species of sea turtles into the endangered category. Mostly each of the six species of sea turtles that are found in the ocean, such leatherback, mud turtle and a softshell turtle which is also known as “turtle without shell” due to their soft skin, are now considered as endangered as per the data under (IUCN) and human are the major threat to them. They also suffer the destruction of their habitat, and some people also catch them up in fishing rods and nets; mainly, the mud turtle becomes the victim in such incidents along the shore.

At the whole worldwide level, the population of certain species of sea turtle is unknown. Even the interpretation of the population trends of turtles depends upon the nesting season up to some extent.

Many sea turtles have been tagged to get the desired amount of information about their reproductive phase, and This will help us in detecting and monitoring their movements under the sea, especially during the season of migration.

Lastly, the government of the international nation needs to come forward and take some necessary steps to stop killing these ancient creatures just for the purpose of profit. Some institution already takes some preventive measures for these giant marine animals by imposing jurisdiction on people who hunt and poach these turtles for their skin, shell and meat.

You can also check out more of our stuff on such context of Reptilia; here, you will get to know what makes the reptiles and amphibians different from each other, check it out and tell us what you think about our work by sharing your opinions with us.

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