Did you know that the number of eggs in a turtle nest, known as a clutch, varies depending on the species? Most species lay eggs once a year; a few species lay every other year, and some species lay more than twice in a single nesting season.
During the nesting season, sea turtles typically lay between six and ten clutches of eggs. Some green turtles were recorded to have laid 12 nests in a season! Depending on the species and size of the turtle, a clutch will contain between 80-180 eggs. The largest sea turtle—the Leatherback turtles—lay approximately 110 eggs per clutch. Meanwhile, the Hawksbill turtles produce the largest clutches, with up to 140-160 eggs in a nest!
The river-dwelling turtles move along the river in search of large sandbars (or sandbanks) with suitable nesting conditions. River terrapins mate in-water during the Northeast monsoon, in November and December. Then, they lay their eggs from the end of January to mid-March. Females typically lay about 25-35 eggs each season. The largest river terrapin clutches recorded 42 and 43 eggs, respectively.
Tortoises, on the other hand, are very particular when it comes to selecting a suitable nest site. For incubation purposes, they must search for a location that receives sunlight and has very well-drained soil. A single mating will result in the fertilisation of up to 30 eggs, but these will not be laid in a single clutch. Following fertilisation, the tiny eggs are separated into clutches of two to twelve, depending on the species, and then allowed to develop to full size one clutch at a time.
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