How To Tell The Age Or Sex Of A Turtle

by valerie cherry
(Melrose Park IL 60160)

How do I know if my turtle is a boy or a girl?
And how do I know how old my turtle is?

Hi Valerie,

Lots of people have the problems you have.

First, here's how to tell the sex of a turtle. You will pay attention to two body parts.
1. Look at the plastron. That's the bottom shell. If it is concave -- dents upward toward the inside of the turtle -- you have a boy.
2. Look at the tail. Boys have longer and thicker tails. Or course, this helps you only if you can see other turtles like yours. You didn't send a picture, so we can't help you more than that.

Second, you want to know the age of a turtle. The only real way to know is to be there when the turtle is born. If the turtle is young, size can help you if you know what is normal for the type of turtle you have.

Some people think that you can tell how old a turtle is by counting the rings on its shell the way you can with a tree, but that isn't true.

Keep it slow and steady,


Comments for How To Tell The Age Or Sex Of A Turtle

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Oct 29, 2014
age of turtle
by: nicole

how can i tell how old a yellow belly slideris

Oct 27, 2014
by: Livi

A friend of mine brought in two very very young snapping turtles to give a teacher who works at the local wild life sanctuary (though I don't know her because i have no classes with her). He said it was because he didn't want them getting hit by a car or something.
We were trying to guess their ages and I noticed how soft their plastrons were. I've never seen a turtle with one so squishy. Is that a normal thing? I'm guessing that its because of their age, and if so, when do they begin to harden?

Dec 19, 2013
Help please
by: Jessie

We found a turtle in our backyard yesterday we need help finding out his name

Nov 14, 2013
Turtle Gender
by: Yen

You can tell the sex of a turtle by also its size. In most species, the female is bigger than a male.

May 20, 2012
Male/Female differentitaiton
by: Anonymous

there is another way to tell if a turtle is male or female. look at its tail, if its butt hole is farther down the tail its a male. If the hole is closer to the shell its a female. Hope that helps :) I took my 2 red-eared sliders to pet smart to make sure.

Mar 06, 2012
by: Anonymous

What is a concave??

Feb 07, 2012
by: Anonymous

Concave means dented in. I always remember by thinking of a cave.

Convex means bulged out, by the way. Just saying.

Feb 07, 2012
by: Anonymous

i dont know what concave is so im never going to find out what my aquatic turtle is.. thanks Tisha Walker

Aug 24, 2009
Dear tortoise asker.
by: Anonymous

ok if you want to know the sex its only by the tail and shell if you can see the bottom of the shell, flip it, BUT BE CAREFULL NOT IN THE WATER because it cant breath like that, how ever, if its flat she is a girl if its like a small hill going up he is a boy.hope it help

Sep 25, 2008
Ssex of a turtle by it's tail
by: Anonymous

how do you tell the sex of a turtle if you can't pick it up? my teacher wants us to tell her but says we can't pick it up. she says there is a way to tell by it's shell and i have searched everywhere and all it tells me is by the tail and by the plas thing (the bottom of the shell) HELP!!!! i need to no now!!!

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