Saturday, May 22, 2021

Reviewing World Turtle Day

Two turtles sunning on rocks

History and Origin of World Turtle Day:

World Turtle Day was created in 2000. It was founded by Susan Tellem and Marshall Thompson. Today it is an annual event sponsored by the American Tortoise Rescue organization.

Date When Celebrated:  This holiday event is always celebrated on May 23

World Turtle Day was created for two reasons:

  1.  To celebrate and enjoy both turtles and tortoises.
  2.  Bring awareness to the disappearing habitat of turtles and to educate people on how to protect them.

Facts about Turtles and Tortoises.

  • Turtles and tortoises have a long life span. Many species live 35 to 50 years and some have been known to live a lot longer.
  • Some species are carnivores, while others are herbivores. 
  • According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, 129 of 300 species of turtles and tortoises are on the endangered  species list.      


What's the Difference Between a Turtle and a Tortoise?

turtle on a log by a stream
Source: Pixabay

Both turtles and tortoises are reptiles, dating back over 200 million years. 

The major difference stems from the fact that a tortoise lives on land and a turtle lives in the water for most of the time. Now  I'm sure you realize that "Turtle" you bought at the pet store and the one you saw in the park or even your back yard, was actually a Tortoise.  But even knowing the difference, it's okay if you want to refer to all species as simply “Turtles”. 

Crafty Turtles


Handmade plush TMNT dolls
TMNT - Donatello-Raphael-Leonardo-Michelangelo

Favorite cartoon turtles in Amigurumi Crochet inspired by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

These crocheted turtle dolls are hand-crocheted in a sage green acrylic yarn. Each turtle has a different color headband - Red for Raphael, Orange for Michelangelo, Purple for Donatello and Blue for Leonardo. The turtle's belly is in yellow yarn. The turtle shell on the back is done in dark forest green. There is a brown belt around each turtle. The eyes are black craft safety eyes.

The turtles are stuffed with a new soft polyester fiberfill. They each measure 6 inches tall and 4 inches across the arms and body. 

Tiny Turtles Plush Animals

Tiny toy plush turtles
Tiny Toy Turtles

These tiny turtles measures 5 inches from head to tail and about 3 inches from the tip of the head to the little turtle feet. Tiny turtles are handmade in the Amigurumi style of crochet using acrylic yarn and filled with soft polyfil.

Tiny Turtles make a darling baby gift or a fun plush toy for any age child. 

Terrance the Tortoise

Plush toy turtle in crochet
Terrance the Tortoise

Meet Terrance, a plush stuffed toy tortoise. Terrance is an Amigurumi toy turtle handmade in crochet. You can call him by his nickname, Terry.

Terrance the tortoise is crocheted in yellow, tan and sage green acrylic yarn and filled with soft new polyfil. He measures approximately 10 inches long and 11 inches wide including his legs (about 5 inches across his body with 3 inch legs each side).

Toy tortoise has a tan body with a sage green shell. His head, legs and tail are done in yellow. His eyes are embroidered. He's soft and cuddly and fun for any age child.

All the crafty turtles above are available now or will be back soon in the Etsy shop of Coastal Crochet Crafts. If you want a turtle sooner, just drop a note in the Etsy Shop and Pat will create a custom order for you. :)

Famous Turtles

The most famous turtles are:

  • The four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - Michelangelo, Raphael, Leonardo and Donatello
  • Squirt and Crush from Finding Nemo

Related Links:

Plush Turtles and a Tortoise – Plush Toy Animals Story

World Sea Turtle Day – June 16

Turtle on a log

World Turtle Day review written by (c) Wednesday Elf

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


  1. Those turtle photos are gorgeous. Really really nice. The little crocheted turtles make a great addition to a themed room. My step-daughter absolutely loves turtles.

    1. I think just about everyone loves turtles, Barbara. They are so interesting. I know I love crafting them. :) Thanks for your visit.

  2. Of course we need a day to celebrate turtles! We all love them. We see a lot of the little lake inhabitants around here, but no tortoises. My son's favorite creature at the zoo in Hawaii was the huge tortoise and he still has turtles painted on his wall, along with his poisonous frogs and alligator.

    1. OH! And, of course, I love all of your crocheted turtles. They are adorable!

    2. Thanks, Mouse. Glad you like my crocheted turtles.

      When we lived in Florida, hubby used to take our toddler son to see a giant Sea Turtle near the bay every Sunday morning. That was their special outing, just the 2 of them. Grown up son still likes turtles to this day. :)

  3. When we spend time at my in-laws’ 3-season lakeside cottage in Maine, my husband and I love taking leisurely excursions in the canoe or pedal boat to enjoy wildlife watching. We always stop rowing or pedaling whenever we spot a loon (or, if we’re lucky, a loon family) or a turtle or two 🐢 🐢 sunning themselves on a rock, usually near or at RTR shoreline.

    Your Amigurumi crochet turtles are absolutely adorable! I love the set inspired by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the Tinies, and Terry. I bet buyers must snap them up (so to speak)!

    1. Thanks, Margaret. My little TMNT turtles in crochet are very popular with children. And they are fun to craft.

  4. I did not know there was a "Turtle" day! We had a turtle as a pet for a while but he outgrew his confines and was set free in our yard. We had a pond for him to play in and lots of vegetation to snack on. Somehow though he disappeared and we never saw him again. I hope he found his way to the "creek". In Brazil, I had two pet turtles that lived within the confines of our home. It was gated so they never got out. It's nice to know they have their own special day and that people are looking out for them.

    1. Glad you enjoyed my 'turtle day' story, Olivia. Nice to know they have their own special day of recognition.

  5. Ms Elf, I love turtles so much. Would you belive that I find them crossing the dry dirt road up on the mountain? And your Terry turtle is adorable!!

    1. Fun to have turtles on your mountain road, Dawn Rae. And Terry Turtle thanks you for the compliment. :)

  6. I never knew there was a turtle day, and I'm amazed that there are so many species of turtles. Your crocheted turtles are adorable and would be a great gift idea for anybody who loves turtles.

    1. Thanks, Sam. I've found that children love my stuffed turtles. It's my most popular item at the Farmers Market craft table. Thanks for your visit.

  7. I love turtles and tortoises and am glad they have a day!They are wonderful creatures. As you said many are endangered and need protection now. Very important as the more we learn and understand them the more likely conservation will occur and hopefully succeed. I also love all your cute crocheted turtles :)

    1. Thanks for the compliment. I love crocheting these turtles.


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