The end of the Labor Day weekend coincides with the beginning of sea turtle season at many US beaches and on sea shores in other parts of the world.
The season lasts till the end of October and it is the time when sea turtles are hatching from their eggs on beaches and sea shores. Luckily for them, many more eggs will survive now that the summer beach boom is over.
Photoshop turtles any way you wish. Examples may include - showing how the world would be different if turtles ruled, merging turtles with other animals or people, including turtles in paintings, etc. We will allow any type of turtles, even the human-created ones from cartons and movies (like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles).
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This contest is fueled by the following news: Turtles (Lat. Testudines) are Reptiles of the Order Testudines, that have existed for over a period of 250 million years. The Order Testudines consists of approximately 230 species, grouped in 12 families and 2 sub orders, spread across the earth and living both in water and on land.
It is possible to accurately differentiate the modern turtles from other animals due to the presence of the shell. The shell consists of an upper shell, Carapace and Plastron (lower shell), which encases the belly. In many turtles, the outer shell is covered from the top by symmetric horny scales called scutes. From the front and back, the shell has holes, through which the turtle moves its limbs. In some species, mobile portions of the shell can tightly close both the holes (and one of the holes) at the time of danger. The shape of the shell is linked with the living style of the turtles: In land based species, the shell is high, dome-shaped and often diamond-shaped and in freshwater species, the shell is low, flat and smooth and aquatic turtles have a streamlined tear-drop shaped shell.
The neck, spinal, side and marginal shields are a fusion on the carapace and throat, inter throat, brachial, pectoral, abdominal, femoral, anal, axillary, inguinal and inter marginal shields and are segregated on the plastron. Each shield grows individually and concentric rings grow on the shield.
In soft turtles, the shell is covered with a soft skin from the top.
All turtles reproduce by means of eggs. After pairing, which in many cases takes place on land, the female turtles lay eggs in a jug-shaped chamber, which is excavated using their hind legs. Then the chamber is filled up with eggs and the nesting chamber is closed using her hind legs and plastron. The eggs are usually round or ovoid in shape and of a white color. The egg is covered with a solid calcareous shell. For aquatic and some side-necked turtles, the eggs are covered with a soft leather shell. The number of eggs in a clutch depends on the species and fluctuates from a few pieces to hundreds. Many turtles can lay eggs several times during the reproductive season.
To date, the evolution chain from Parareptiles up to turtles is unclear. But conventionally, turtles are considered to be descendants of the Permian cotylosaurus. The first turtle Proganochelys quenstedi appeared in the Mesozoic age in the Triassic period (200 million years back). Out of the 26 families, only 12 families could survive to our time. Now, many modern turtles are on the edge of extinction. Many fossil turtles are known, amongst which the largest was the myolania with a length of approximately 5 meters. The turtle probably had a huge and powerful tail, practically of the same length as that of the shell. The tail is set with two rows of bony flat thorns. The lengthy blunt "horns", directed towards the back and sideways, are located at the ends of the triangular turtle.
All species of turtles (they are around 290) are remarkably tolerant and tenacious. They are extremely resistant to a variety of infections, recover quickly after injuries and can live without food for long time.
The Turtle-Marion has a documented age of 152 years.
Scientists believe that, the turtles may well live from 200 - 300 years, if they are kept in conditions favorable for them.