How Long Do Turtles Live?

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Turtles, including tortoises and terrapins, have varying life spans depending on the species. Some live only 10 to 25 years, while others live for over 150 years. The oldest recorded turtle is Harriet the Turtle, who died at 175 years old in 2006.

Turtles like Harriet, a Galápagos giant tortoise, tend to live long lives. They have no significant natural predators, so the only major threats to them are humans. Sea turtles have shorter lifespans than giant tortoises, at about 80 years. As of 2014, studies indicate that the vital organs of centenarian turtles are identical to those of teenage turtles. Turtles don’t die because they grow old, so they may be capable of living for 400 to 500 years or more if they don’t die to disease, accidents, predators or humans.