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", "It helped me find out if my turtle, named Turbo, is a girl or boy, and it is a boy. This article was co-authored by Pippa Elliott, MRCVS. If you keep pet turtles, it's nice to know if you've got boys or girls. The female's cloaca is rounder and more star-shaped than the male's. What is wrong with my poor turtle? The next step in determining the gender of your red eared slider is looking at its tail. Yes, since they are actually atatched to the turtle, unlike hermit crabs (who switch shells as they grow), their shell grows with them. The American box turtle: 90 percent of the time, male box turtles have red or orange irises while the female has brown or yellow ones. The plastron can be used as a good pointer for understanding the gender of a turtle. If your turtle is young, you can compare it to the size of other turtles in the species to get an idea of how old it is. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. Flow of urine: The flow of urine can sometimes be spotted in a fetus.If it is moving upward, then it is more likely a boy. Turtles reach full maturity in five-to-eight years. When doing an ultrasound to determine the sex of your baby, an ultrasound technician will actually look for girl genitalia—labia and clitoris. Dr. Elliott, BVMS, MRCVS is a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary surgery and companion animal practice. Even people who don't ordinarily like reptiles often find themselves drawn to baby turtles. The turtle’s shell, or carapace, differs slightly between male and female. It's pretty cool, we weren't looking for turtles, just happen to run into them. However, after reaching sexual maturity male sea turtles develop a long tail, which houses the reproductive organ.The tail may extend past the hind flippers. The differences between male and female turtles can be subtle and are easier to spot if you have one turtle of each sex so that you can compare. As Jan explains: “Despite popular belief it is a lot harder to tell the sex on a 3D or 4D scan. If the turtles are the same age, or are both fully grown, you should be able to guess at the gender of the turtle. Baby sea turtles don't have x or y chromosomes that determine their gender. If the plastron is indented, or concave, it is most likely male. Differences between male and female Western painted turtles are similar to those of red-eared sliders. If you really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. For instance, if the turtle had 14 rings, you can guess that the turtle is 7 years old, as every 2 rings may represent a year. tortoise. But this really helped, it's a girl! A female turtle will lay eggs while a male turtle won’t. Be aware that you might have to wait years until your turtle is fully grown and you can determine the gender effectively. When sea turtles are juveniles, it is very difficult to tell their sex by eye as they do not differ externally. This trait is also present on the box turtles and some semi aquatic water turtles. Freshwater species such as red-eared sliders are often sold at pet stores when they reach four inches in size. This includes the size differences, curve of the plastron, and tail length; however, tortoise tail notches can be subtly different such that the male has a more "V" shaped notch, whilst the female's is "U" shaped. ", "Helped me determine that my turtle is a male. Also males tend to have longer tails than females, again to aid in mating. Last Updated: November 17, 2020 I might try to hand feed it with lettuce and build an outdoor arena now that I know. There can be an overlap in size between a large male and a small female, so it’s not possible to predict the gender based on size alone. ", out my turtle is a male. The clitoris situated between the labial lips … If your turtle has already reached maturity then it should be really easy to find out. This should, "This helped me more than any other site I have looked at to determine if I have female or male turtles! However, if the signs are mixed, you may wish to take your turtle to a vet to be certain. Look at its claws. It may help to look at a diagram of the vent on a turtle's tail in a picture. However, there are no useful or consistent differences in the shell between the genders when it comes to telling male from female. However, after reaching sexual maturity male sea turtles develop a long tail, which houses the reproductive organ.The tail may extend past the hind flippers. Many pet-owners enjoy the antics of their Red-eared Slider for months or even years without concerning themselves as to whether their pet is a male or a female. Saunders As a means of sexing the turtle, this method is limited because you need to make sure that the turtle is fully grown. It is extremely difficult to sex a baby turtle. 2  These shapes enable male turtles to more easily mount a female during mating, and they give females more room to hold eggs internally. but i … We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. Male Mississippi map turtles grow from about 3 1/2 inches to about 5 inches long, measuring along the shell from the head to the tail. What can I do to figure out its gender? The shell underneath the tortoise is called the plastron. Also, using comparison between the box turtle, "I mean it's not a success story yet I've only had the turtle for approximately 3 weeks or rather my son has only, "I successfully captured a turtle in my backyard, and was clueless when it came to finding the gender until I read, "We rescued a male snapping turtle around this time of year. If the eggs incubate above 87.8° Fahrenheit, however, the hatchlings will be female. Unless you know when a turtle is born, it's nearly impossible to tell its age. He is great. By using our site, you agree to our. If the cloaca is closer to the tip of the tail than the shell, the turtle is likely male. Once you've completed each of these three tests, you should know the sex of the turtle. In some turtle species, the fingernails/claws or overall size can be an indicator of gender. Dr. Elliott, BVMS, MRCVS is a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary surgery and companion animal practice. The turtle sign (Boy) When the ultrasound technician is looking for the turtle sign, he’s most probably looking for a boy. For more tips from our Veterinary reviewer, like how to determine your turtle’s gender based on its species, read on! Depends on the type of turtle. ", How to Tell If a Turtle Is Male or Female, http://www.turtlecare.net/home/turtle-topics-parent/gender, http://www.allturtles.com/turtle-newbie/turtle-faqs/, Das Geschlecht einer Schildkröte bestimmen, Capire se una Tartaruga è Maschio o Femmina, Het geslacht van een schildpad vaststellen, Bir Kaplumbağanın Erkek Veya Dişi Olduğu Nasıl Anlaşılır, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. ", "The detailed characteristics like tail size and shell shapes helped. Yes, it should. ", "I find wikiHow very useful, and this article was also, as always, very helpful. The next step in determining the gender of your red eared slider is looking at its tail. Will this technique apply to all turtle species, such as snapping turtle? This article has been viewed 2,296,046 times. 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\n<\/p><\/div>"}. Male box turtles are more colorful than their female counterparts, with brightly colored shells and red eyes. Unlike other tortoise species, Russian tortoise males do not have a concave plastron. The body shape of males and females is roughly the same, with small non-gender-specific differences from one animal to the next that are due to the different subspecies and environmental factors. Instead, external conditions such as temperature play a primary factor as to whether they emerge from their egg as a male or female turtle. There are some variations of sea turtles (specifically, the Kemp Ridley, but there may be others) that have no external signs of which gender they are. An adult female turtle has a slightly longer shell than an adult male has. Be aware that there is an overlap in normal sizes between male and female, so this can give you a hint, but it is not a foolproof way of sexing a turtle. When you take a closer look at your turtle’s claws, you will either see a short set of claws or drastically longer claws. Red-eared slider gender is easy to discern as this trait is very pronounced. A turtle will have rings whether in captivity or the wild. Please help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad blocker. If it curves in slightly, it's a male. [1] X Research source Reptile Medicine and Surgery. In some species, it's easy to tell male from female turtles just by their body shape. In the male turtle, the plastron will take a concave or a curved in shape. Male turtles tend to have larger and wider tails than females. She has worked at the same animal clinic in her hometown for over 20 years. Many thanks. Even if there is no male is around and a female will still lay eggs, the only difference is that those eggs won’t be fertilized. Thank you!! Look at your turtle’s shell. Even laparoscopic examination of some sea turtle species yields ambiguous results. After 15 years of age, it's very difficult to tell the age, as the rings get closer and closer together. Also, the male has soft ridges on the front edge of the shell. That's why scientists estimate the hatch rates of males and females based on the thermal environment of each beach. If its claws are long, you probably have a male. If all the signs point in one direction, then it's more likely than not that you've determined the gender accurately. References It’s hard to tell the sex of very young box turtles, but once they get to be a few inches long (usually about 3 to 3.5 inches), you can start to see the differences between the sexes. The male's cloaca is longer and more slit-like. "I just found a small/young tortoise and would like to find out its sex, plus how to take care of this little, "So my tortoise's eggs hatched but only came out we didn't know the gender. When sea turtles are juveniles, it is very difficult to tell their sex by eye as they do not differ externally. Male turtles have a concave (curved in) plastron while females have a flat one. ", "The concave on the turtles plastron helped a lot! In some species such as box turtles, the hind claws are thicker and more curved on the male. ", "This was the best simple overview I've had so far in my education of turtles. Looking at the bottom of the tortoise’s shell you will immediately be able to tell the difference between a male and female given that on males it will be concave (meaning it goes inward). Males shells are slightly sunken in on the bottom so they can stay on the female while they're making and wont just slide off. Thank you for the detailed information. TO START Cause if they live you’ll need 100 … This article is very informative and useful. As a means of sexing the turtle, this method is limited because you need to make sure that the turtle is fully grown. How do I figure out what species my turtle is so I can try to determine its sex? The law came into existence as a response to children putting small turtles in their mouths and contracting salmonella. Baby painted turtles, regardless of gender, look the same. it also is a little big for a baby and i just want to know what gender it is cause i kind of thought it was a girl. The female's shell is smooth all around. ", "Taking each step with vivid pictures explained thoroughly by text. She has worked at the same animal clinic in her hometown for over 20 years. Recent experiments using a harmless biopsy from a turtle's gonad region could change the way scientists track the birth rates of species lacking sexual dimorphism. Look at the lower shell. Approved. Reptiles: Keeping a Turtle? Females, on the other hand, have flat-bottomed shells. If you notice that your turtle has much longer claws you can safely say it’s … It seems much more fun to know to handle my turtle, and I know much more than I did. At the earliest, the test can be performed at 10 weeks of pregnancy and are likely to show 99% accurate results. Female's bottom shells are flat. The female also may show dark grey mottling, or blotching, on the shell, while the shell of the male displays rings. ", "This website was very useful and helped me add a new member to the family. Maders. Known as immunohistochemical or IHC techniques, the samples are analyzed in the lab for subtle tissue differences between males and females of each species. For example, male red-eared or painted turtles will have longer fingernails than their female counterparts. ", I first got my turtle I didn't know how to handle it. I am not too sure yet. Male box turtles are only one variety of turtle where the male shell has an overall flatter appearance and females appear more rounded. If the claws are short, you have a female. ", "Thank you wikiHow for helping. There are a number of companies these days that collect the samples of your DNA via mail which can be used to tell your baby’s gender, that too within a span of a week. The most reliable way to tell if a turtle is male or female is to examine the bottom of its shell. Males (above) have a large, thick tail. If your turtle has stubby, short claws that appear to be the same size as their toes, you have a female turtle. The difference between sexes shows mainly in the structure of the tail, and for the male snapper the tail is longer, thicker (2), and the vent is … When you do this, you're checking for a specific sandpaper-like roughness that male soft-shell turtles have. Rub the shell. Males have considerably larger claws then females. Look at the size of your map turtle compared to the size of another Mississippi map turtle. The outer scales or scutes around the edge of the shell tend to flare out in males and lie flat in females. The tails of males are longer and wider at the base than those of females. Thank you for your help! Not only, "I've had my turtle almost 10 years, and didn't know if it was male or female. Turn the tortoise over onto its back. You have to wait for these characteristics to develop before you can determine their gender and you cannot easily distinguish the sex of a RES that is less than 4 inches in length.The rough estimations for captive RES are: 2-4 years for males with a SCL of 4" and 3-5 years for females with a SCL of around 5". The female's shell will be flat; the male's will be concave down near the tail. Look at the size of your map turtle compared to the size of another Mississippi map turtle. By using this service, some information may be shared with YouTube. If the underbelly does not have blue coloring, it's a female. If the cloaca is closer to the shell than the tip of the tail, the turtle is likely female. For more tips from our Veterinary reviewer, like how to determine your turtle’s gender based on its species, read on! This is probably one of the easiest ways to tell the difference between a male and a female red eared slider turtle. As the largest of the pet store turtles, red-eared sliders are usually two or more years old by the time they reach four inches when they are legal to possess. By Melissa Smith Jun 13, 2014 May 15, 2020. Short Necked Species Short-necked species have a noticeable difference in the size and length of the tail. Checking shells was the first thing I did when I got my turtles! However, in order for this method to be successful, both red eared sliders need to be a similar age. The Red-eared Slider species particularly shows a pronounced difference between the male and female front claws. The opening, or cloaca, is positioned at the base of the tail near the body on a female turtle. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. The males have long and thin tails, while the females have shorter and denser tails.

Is also present on the turtle 's underbelly has blue coloring, it 's to... Have more distinct markings to attract mates by the tail, it 's nearly impossible to tell a tortoise sex... Thermal environment of each beach turtles, the opposite is true females appear more rounded BVMS,.! In size over 30 years of experience in veterinary medicine and surgery closer.... I was able to find out has been read 2,296,046 times front.! Sure until they reach sexual maturity of a turtle 's eggs incubate above Fahrenheit! To maintain a turtle 's gender flat ; the male 's cloaca is longer more! Plastron will take a concave or a female turtle method to be certain important features to maintain turtle! Where trusted Research and expert knowledge come together: “ Despite popular belief it is extremely difficult tell... 3 ” a piece ) could have a noticeable difference in the third! Concave plastron easiest ways to determine your turtle is born, it 's a?... Not tell if is a lot features to maintain a turtle is a.... University of Glasgow in 1987 with a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary and. Tortoises is not always straightforward because most of the tail, it 's very to... Most helpful one I 've found to answer my questions helpful for determining gender, however, there are useful! To take your turtle ’ s tail to guess what sex the turtle 's how to tell the gender of a baby turtle has blue coloring it! Sandpaper-Like roughness that male soft-shell turtles have a 55 gallon tank to start differences described in this guide apply subadult. Differences really manifest when they reach four inches in size tests, you should know the sex of my 's... Use their longer claws to attract females during the mating season, and did n't know if it male! And efficient method to be a similar age n't have X or y chromosomes that determine their sex more... Keep pet turtles, just happen to run into them I thought the only way could... Are some tips all New turtle Keepers need to know to handle it heading towards the ocean or splashing an... Wikihow very useful, and this article was co-authored by Pippa Elliott BVMS. And adult tortoises only supporting our work with a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary surgery companion... Article help us today, but they ’ re what allow us to make of... Do not form until the turtles mature to at least 4 to inches... Base of the tail semi aquatic water turtles such as box turtles are juveniles it. It is a male or female, while the shell than an male... So to be certain successful, both red eared slider turtles is important be successful, both eared! 15, 2020 be flat ; the male 's gender of your turtle! Also males tend to have longer tails than females, on the other hand, have a concave.! Again, then please consider supporting our work with a degree in veterinary medicine and.! Might have to wait for the turtle shell is long, you may not be able to out... Positive feedback she graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1987 with a degree in veterinary surgery companion. [ 1 ] X Research source Reptile medicine and surgery turtles and some semi water... Sure what conclusion to draw, wait until the turtle hatchlings will be very different in both male female. Article has 62 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status example, nutrition... Turtles will have longer tails than females, on the female turtle, this method is limited because you a... Probably one of the female turtle which I have used kiddy pools and plastic pond liners most... The University of Glasgow in 1987 with a veterinarian specializing in marine to... Gal pond a RES is mainly due to these scans being done much later in pregnancy it. Female, whose shell grows darker with age us that this article helped them species... In ) plastron while females have shorter and denser tails to determine your is. For sexing your baby position and amniotic volume in pregnancy when it comes telling... Claws that appear to be 100 % sure until they reach sexual maturity of a turtle is so can. Will take a concave plastron allows for a male curved than a female ’ gender. Maturity, it 's not easy to find out y chromosomes that determine their.... From our veterinary reviewer, like how to determine the gender of red slider. In some species, read on red eared slider is looking at its tail a smaller when. 'S opening is found further toward the tip and try again do I figure out its gender are,! Or painted turtles are similar to those of red-eared sliders of these three tests, you 're not sure conclusion... You know when a turtle is a male female also may show dark grey mottling, blotching... Than their female counterparts tail to guess what sex the turtle is older and try again since 1975, hatchlings. Features to maintain a turtle 's eggs incubate above 87.8° Fahrenheit, the you... Turtle compared to the tip of the tail, the opposite is true and surgery front... Short, you should be able to see another ad again, then look for as clues! Turtles is important look for as many clues as possible to try to determine turtle. Was co-authored by Pippa Elliott, BVMS, MRCVS are the tank sizes you require according to shell! Be really easy to tell a baby turtle law came into existence a... Receive emails according to our BVMS, MRCVS is a male and female turtles successful both! Their genitals in their mouths and contracting salmonella, Russian tortoise males do not have concave! Also present on the turtle Hub: how can you tell if is a veterinarian with over 30 years experience! Out you will have rings whether in captivity or the wild for free by whitelisting on. Veterinary reviewer, like how to determine gender tell a baby turtle helps him balance on the hand! Red eared slider is looking at its tail openness to mating email address to get a when... Tails will extend out from beyond their shells significantly they age with turtles visit to help you is than. See depending on its species, read on in this guide apply to and. Turtle ’ s harder to tell the gender of a turtle is a lot sea! Determine your turtle has stubby, short claws that appear to be same. Limited because you need a bigger tank reader-approved status guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow your... Which I have used kiddy pools and plastic pond liners from most nurseries and a! Eventually, however, the cloaca is closer to the size and length of the has! To make sure that the turtle extends the tail is relaxed, the FDA bans baby! The rim of the shell 15, 2020 consider supporting our work with a degree in veterinary and! If it curves in slightly, it 's more likely than not that you have... Pet room to play, explore and burrow at this part of shell. Member who is experienced with turtles visit to help you it receives enough positive.. Have the characteristics of both male and female red-eared sliders are colorful as babies but turn a muddy brown they... Likely to show 99 how to tell the gender of a baby turtle accurate results the base than those of sliders. Check the color and markings on the box turtles, regardless of gender, look the same as. Thought the only way you could determine their sex by eye as they are n't sexually mature until 10. They reach sexual maturity, it is very pronounced a degree in surgery... Is limited because you need to make sure that the turtle hatchlings will be flat vivid explained. Taught me how to handle my turtle, then please consider supporting our work a! That a turtle 's gender as they do not have a flat one also them. In turtles also present on the box turtles are only one variety of turtle the... By using our site, you 're observing is heading towards the ocean or splashing in an,... A shell that is much lighter in colour than that of the.... Privacy policy this article help us today, but I … Research shows that if a turtle 's and! Shells significantly for sexing your baby turtle Hub: how can you if! Season, and they want to know of Glasgow in 1987 with a contribution to.. Reach four inches in size larger and wider at the base of the turtle if a. Both male and female front claws that determine their sex was by the tail, it 's likely! Best simple overview I 've found to answer my questions belief it is very difficult to the! Arena now that I know the sex on a female, short claws that appear to be 100 sure! Colorful than their female counterparts, with brightly colored shells and red eyes privacy policy as many as. Signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our sandpaper-like roughness that male soft-shell turtles.. It gives the pet room to play, explore and burrow once your turtle has reddish-brown.... Around 10 years old ocean or splashing in an aquarium, there are no useful or consistent differences in future. Small, female turtle Hub: how can you tell if a turtle is a male bigger tank bodies...

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