how old turtles

Turtle Ageing

Turtles are some of the oldest animals on the planet, and their lifespan depends upon their species. With an average age between 30-50 years, certain types of turtles have been known to live well over 100 years! To understand the ageing of turtles, it is important to know the factors that contribute to their lifespans.

Age Depends on Species

The age of a turtle can vary greatly depending on its species. Some turtles, such as sea turtles, have long life spans while others, such as tortoises, can live to be over 100 years old! Similarly, freshwater turtles have a relatively shorter lifespan than their sea-dwelling counterparts.

Nutrition and Care Matter

The most important factor in determining how old a turtle can live is the nutrition and care it receives. A turtle can be provided with the best diet and environment, however if it is neglected, its lifespan will eventually be cut short. Turtles need to be provided with adequate space, clean water, and regular vet visits to ensure it remains healthy.

Age Markers

To determine how old a turtle is, you can look at certain age markers:

  • Size: The size of a turtle can be a good indicator of age, as larger turtles will usually be older.
  • Shell: A turtle’s shell can tell you a lot about its age. Older turtles will have thicker, darker shells while younger turtles may seem paler and thinner.
  • Reproduction: Some turtles may be able to reproduce when they reach sexual maturity, which typically happens when they are at least 10 years old.


Turtles can live to be very old, depending on their species and the care they receive. Age markers such as size, shell, and reproduction can help you determine how old a turtle may be. It is important for turtle owners to provide their pets with the proper nutrition and care to ensure they live to their fullest life potential!

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