Like most animals turtles must sleep, however unlike most other pets turtles have a very interesting way of sleeping.

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During the night most turtles sleep underwater. If a turtle can’t obtain underwater to sleep it will usually try to discover a for sure spot choose a hole in the ground, a heap of dirt or leaves, or a pile of rocks. Pet turtles will also sleep in your basking area.

But there room a many of components that influence the method a turtle will sleep. And not every turtles are able to continue to be underwater for lengthy periods of time. So let’s take it a much more in depth look at the way turtles sleep.

Do turtle Sleep Underwater?

Most turtles will certainly sleep underwater, but not all turtles room able to perform so. The turtle family members splits in three distinctive groups.

Aquatic turtles which room able to sleep underwater, right here are a few members the this group:

Red Eared SlidersPainted TurtlesPond TurtlesMap TurtlesWood Turtles

Land turtles, i beg your pardon are likewise known as tortoises, those turtles space unable to sleep or breath underwater, right here are a couple of members that this group:

Box TurtleRussian TortoiseHermann TortoiseGreek TortoiseIndian Star Tortoise

The 3rd group is the sea turtle group, i m sorry live and sleep underwater, but just like the rest of the turtle they need oxygen in order come survive. So also if they invest so lot time underwater, castle still need to obtain out because that air from time to time.

Do tortoise Sleep Inside their Shell?

The following thing that you should understand is that not all turtles are able come retract to your shells and also some turtles, choose sea turtles, have soft shells. So for some species it will do them no favor to retract to their shells.

But many turtles carry out retract in their shells when they are sleeping. Lock usually perform this to hide and also protect themselves from any type of predators that could assault them.

A many pet turtles will sleep inside your shells even if there space no predators. This is mostly their survive instinct 보다 anything else. So don’t issue if your turtle sleeps inside your shell, it’s perfectly normal.

When carry out Turtles Sleep?

Most turtles are active during the day and they sleep during the night. Yet they additionally tend to take it naps as soon as they are basking.

If you very own a pet tortoise you’ve more than likely noticed that when basking your turtle tends to extend their legs, close their eyes and also stay unmoved for long periods the time. Once they execute this they are most probably sleeping.

Very rarely some wild turtles will certainly sleep throughout the day, but they only do this before or ~ laying eggs.

Where execute Turtles Sleep?

When picking a place to sleep among the many important determinants for tortoise is protection. They will try to discover a resting spot that offers them good protection versus predators. This applies for both pets and also wild turtles.

Usually castle will shot to uncover a an excellent place near piles the rocks, and also if feasible they will shot to remain under them. These type of clues offer good protection from predators that attack from above.


Turtle sleeping under a heap of leaves

Other places they prefer to sleep room tree stumps as well as holes in the ground. Those spots normally offer an excellent protection from every kinds the predators.


Tortoise resting in a small cave

If they can find no rocks or holes to hide lock can also go in locations with dense vegetation. These kinds of places considerably reduce visibility hence making castle a an excellent place to sleep.

Turtles additionally tend to sleep close to rivers v sandy and also muddy shores where they have the right to dig a hole.

Sea turtles commonly look because that underwater frameworks that will save them safe throughout the night.


Sea turtle sleeping under part coral

How lengthy Do turtle Sleep?

Turtles typically sleep in between 4 and also 6 hours throughout the night. Pet turtles likewise tend to brief naps throughout the day when they room basking, which can last approximately one hour.

But of food the precise amount of time will differ from species to species, as well as other factors like period of the turtle, dimension of the turtle, predators etc.

Difference between the way Pet Turtles and Wild turtle Sleep

Depending on the atmosphere the sleeping behavior of a turtle can change.

A turtle that is born in captivity will not have any kind of experience v predators for this reason they will certainly feel a lot of safer and also they will certainly not issue too much about safety throughout their sleep. Yet that doesn’t mean that they will certainly not take any type of precaution in ~ all. Also if castle haven’t encountered any type of predators a the majority of its ancestors did, and also this sort of info is passed under genetically. So instinctively they will take some sort of precaution even if there is no danger present, yet not as much as a wild turtle will.

A tortoise that has been born in the wild and also later came to be a pet will certainly most most likely be as careful as it usually was. Even if there will be no predators approximately they will certainly still be really careful because of their experiences.

A wild turtle will usually be as mindful as possible. For this reason they will try and uncover the the safest spot possible to sleep in, and they will hardly ever be viewed napping throughout the day. There deserve to be some exception to this, as some turtles that live in parks acquire to it is in accustomed come humans.

Protecting native Predators during Sleep

As ns said among the most important things turtles can do to defend from predators during sleep is to choose a good sleeping spot. However they also have other methods of protecting them during sleep.

One means they can safeguard themselves throughout sleep is by camouflaging. Some types have shells the blend perfectly through the color of the environment so they will certainly not be quickly detected throughout sleep.

They can also throw sand, mud, dust or vegetation on your backs come camouflage themselves.

Turtles additionally have a an extremely alert sleep, for this reason if there is any kind of sudden motion in their vicinity lock will most likely notification will be prepared to run or hit if needed.

Some turtles choose to sleep at night top top brush piles or tree limbs that ar them the end of with of aquatic predators and far enough from the coast to avoid terrestrial predators. The tree limbs additionally work together an alert system. If any predator will concerned close and will touch lock they will vibrate and also will alarm the turtle.

And one of the best defences of a turtle can be that size. Part turtles prefer the Galapagos turtles can thrive so huge that there will be no predator huge enough about them to pose any kind of threat. In ~ this suggest these turtles have the right to sleep without any kind of worry whenever and wherever they want.

The Sleeping behavior of baby Turtles

Baby tortoise have comparable sleeping actions to adult turtles. Ns can’t say the there are any significant differences, besides small differences in the term of the sleep, together baby turtles often tend to sleep one extra hour.


The sleeping actions of turtles room greatly affected by their species and the environment. But as a basic idea you can say the turtles sleep for around 4 to 6 hrs a night and they will try to find a location as safe as possible.

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If friend have any kind of questions about the sleeping habits of turtles leave them in the comment section and I will certainly answer castle as quickly as possible.