There are two parts to a turtles' shell. The upper
part which is most noticable is called the carapace
whereas the part of the shell that is on the bottom
of the turtle is called the plastron.
Unlike the rest of a turtles body it does not shed
the skin that grows on the top and bottom of it. These
many layers of skin that buildup over time are actually
what the shell is made up of.
Underneath the outter layer of the shell is a series
of bones that form the base. The material that builds
up on top connects all the bones together and adds a
great deal of strength to the shell. The upper and lower
parts of the shell are also connected together by a
series of bones. Turtles could not remove themselves
from their shell even if they wanted to because key
parts of their bone structure are connected to the shell.
Since the shell of a turtle plays a vital role it is
important for you to help your turtle avoid damaging
shell conditions such as soft
shell and excess
Turtles do not shed their skin in the same manner as
most other reptiles do. Lizards and snakes go through
a period of time where the entire top layer of their
skin is shed. Turtles on the other hand are constantly
shedding but only in small sections. As they are growing
this is much more noticable but as they get older they
will shed much less.