Do Turtles Have Teeth?


Quick Answer

Turtles do not have teeth, but their mouths have hard, sharpened beaks much like those of birds. Herbivorous turtles have flat and broad mouths that they used to mash and crush plants, while omnivorous turtles bite their food and capture their prey with their sharp, hooked beaks.

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Full Answer

A turtle hatchling has a caruncle, or egg-tooth, to break and emerge from their eggs. It is located in the upper jaw and disappears as the hatchling matures. Soft-shelled turtles have soft lips instead of the sharp upper and lower jaw. They swallow their prey whole using their tongue's muscles. Some species of hard-shelled turtles have a secondary palate, which aid them in crushing fruits, plant stems, snails and insects.

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