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O2010-27

Dear Tommy Turtle

Can turtles see color? I thought animals didn’t recognize color, but my tortoise seems to prefer red hibiscus blossoms to peach or yellow.

Tommy Responds

Many animal species see color, but we turtles and tortoises are the champions.

We even perceive colors you humans aren’t able to see, all the way into the ultraviolet wavelengths. Moreover, we have good night vision.

Turtles and tortoises are so adept at seeing color that we’re often used to research color vision.

Beware, though, if you wear red nail polish and walk barefoot with your pet. I know several tortoises that snap at brightly painted toenails.


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