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Turtles

The Orchideeën Hoeve’s ponds are home to over 200 Red-eared and Cumberland Slider turtles. There some 330 species of turtle worldwide. Similarly to crocodiles and snakes, the turtle is a reptile and therefore a cold-blooded animal. Reptiles have been present on earth for millions of years. They developed before the dinosaurs in fact, and therefore long before humankind!

Given the most favourable habitat, these turtles can live to the age of 30 or even 40. They very much like the heat. You may therefore often spot them sunbathing at the water’s edge, or dozing under one of the heat lamps.

The courtship ritual between males and females is a true mating dance. When a male is attracted to a female, he first dances around her. He then covers her eyes with his claws, to show that he loves her. The male sometimes also bites the female’s neck to attract her attention. This mating dance might continue for hours, before the female finally surrenders. The couple then dive to the bed of the pond, where they mate.