About how land and red-eared turtles mate
The question of how turtles mate is of interest to many people. After all, even those who keep these animals as pets do not always know how to determine the sex of a reptile. What can I say about pairing!
Short description of the squad of turtles
These animals belong to the order of reptiles. They live in captivity for up to 50 years. But in the natural environment can exist about twice as much. Although there are legends that there are individuals who have reached 350 years or more. But only the fact of life span of the Madagascan radiant tortoise Tui Malila – 188 years is documented. She is today considered the long-lived winner.
A distinctive feature of all types of turtles is the presence of a shell. Perhaps thanks to him they managed to survive, despite the various disasters that occurred on our planet. After all, these creatures are very ancient.
Turtles are not strangers to demonstrative sympathies. Males in the mating season become very active. Many are mistaken in considering turtles to be silent creatures. After all, males, caring for their chosen ones, often make sounds similar to yapping. And females have the right to express their opinion in a voice.
Usually males call rivals to fights. And during the period of “battles”, weak animals can be injured and die.
Breeding turtles at home
So it would be a huge mistake to consider turtles calm and good-natured animals.
The male is not so loyal to his chosen one. Seeing a female, begins to shake his head up and down. But he does not intend to wait until she reciprocates with the boyfriend. Having performed a ritual dance-recognition, the male runs to the turtle and hits her head hard with his head. In addition, he bites the reptile by its paws, until in the end it will not be subordinated.
Mating process in nature
First of all, it should be clarified that the genitals of the turtles are in the tail. Therefore, the male comes to the chosen one from behind, crawls onto her back with the front of the body. He adapts his tail under her tail, directing the genitals to the right place.
At the end of the action, the male publishes "victory scream". And let him be heard only by his chosen one, but this is the song of the victor who has reached his goal. The female also answers him "yapping". This is how turtles mate in nature.
Mating of tortoises in captivity
This species of reptiles reproduces both in nature and in captivity. Since land turtles mate in natural conditions only when they have to fight for a female, there must be at least two male captives in order to determine the winner in a battle. Otherwise, interest in the female will simply be lost.
Sex reptiles can be difficult to determine. But with careful examination and comparison of heterosexual individuals, it is clear that there are still differences. For example, the claws on the limbs of a male are longer and harder than that of females. The ventral side of the shell of the “guy” is concave, the femoral spurs are massive. The tail is longer, rounded and wider at the base, because it contains the genitals. The shell covers it with itself.
When keeping these reptiles, it is very important to know if the land tortoise is already mature. How old is she mating? The answer will be: a female should reach a decade. The male should be at least five years old at this moment.
When a competitor is defeated, the time for the marriage ritual begins. The male tries to show himself to the female in all its glory. He catches up with the chosen one, extends the legs and tail, shakes his head. Then the male tries to bend the turtle under him. And sometimes a particularly zealous boyfriend does it with such force that it can damage the shell. That is why experts advise planting the "groom" to the "bride", and not keep them together: "at a party" the male is less determined and not so pronounced aggression, as in its territory.
Mating process in red-eared turtles
It is a freshwater animal. Red-eared turtles live in nature in dirty swampy ponds and ponds. Moreover, males are smaller than females.
There are two answers to the question at what age the red-eared turtles mate. Readiness for the mating season of individuals of both sexes in nature is achieved by six years. But at home, the females mature in five years. Males become sexually mature by their fourth birthday.
In vivo breeding lasts all spring, beginning in late February. Directly in the water, the "groom" settles in front of the head of the "bride", and they swim in parallel. Only he periodically makes a backward movement, touching the chin of the individual with his claws. To lay eggs, the female chooses land, where she digs a nest.
And how do the red-eared turtles mate in captivity? They also do this in water.
For the breeding process, you need to have several females. For them, only one male is needed. In mating time, the future daddy becomes very active. His armor he touches the back of the selected turtle, tickles her paws.
The chosen one and the hero are placed in a separate vessel. The act lasts a quarter of an hour. Comfortable water temperature at the same time 25 degrees. It should be poured no higher than 12 centimeters, as the "bride" will need to breathe.
Then both are returned to the general aquarium. After some time, the male begins to court another female, and the process repeats.
This is how terrestrial and red-eared turtles mate.
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However, if there are several red-eared turtles in the aquaterrarium, and there is confidence in the presence of individuals of turtles of both sexes (I already wrote about how to determine the gender of the red-eared turtle), and even more so if mating was noticed, then clearly incubating the laid eggs makes sense. The most preferred mating season is February-May. It is possible to stimulate the reproduction of turtles by substituting water with an increase in its temperature. Before mating, you can observe the original and fun courtship of the male red-eared turtle. He swims in front of the female tail forward and tickles her cheeks with her claws, while creating small vibrations with her front paws. Also, males often beat with the edge of the shell on the shell of their chosen one. Similar behavior is observed even in immature males. The female, ready for breeding, admits the male. Mating takes place in water. The average duration of the act is 5-15 minutes. Fertilization is enough for four to five clutches. However, sperm can persist in the female genitals for up to two years!
Egg laying occurs on the coast from April to September. The female moistens the sand with her own liquid from the cloacal bubbles, after which she digs a hole 10-20 cm in diameter with her hind legs, and lays 6 to 20 eggs, weighing 5-15 grams, and 3-4 centimeters in diameter.
Are captive-eared freshwater turtles breeding in captivity
After that, the female carefully and accurately bury the masonry.
As mentioned above, to stimulate the reproduction of red-eared turtles, it is desirable to increase the temperature of keeping animals, and you can increase the duration of daylight hours. And it is imperative to create an artificial beach, for example, by placing a cuvette in the terrarium, into which moist sand is poured with a layer of 3-5 cm. And in order for the turtles to crawl out onto the improvised “beach”, you will need to attach a “gangway” to the side of the cuvette, for example, from plexiglass , with holes drilled in it. Holes are needed so that turtles can cling to the "gangway" with claws, crawling out of the water. If the turtle laid eggs directly in the water, for example, in the absence of a shore, they must be immediately removed from the water!
Experienced specialists recommend using a separate terrarium or an aquarium with a capacity of 90-140 l for mating, with standing warm water, the depth of which should not exceed 10-12 cm. the ability to breathe. If mating of turtles did not occur, the couple should be planted for two to three days, after which you can try to repeat the idea.