Red-eared Slider Turtle

Trachemys scripta 

Most reptiles do not have sex chromosomes. They have temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD), rather than genetic sex determination. TSD is observed in many fish, all crocodilians, many turtles, and lizards. Sex in reptiles is determined by the temperature of the egg halfway through embryogenesis. When red-eared slider turtle (Trachemys scripta elegans) embryos are incubated at low temperatures, they develop into all-male clutches, and the transition from an all-male to all-female sex ratio takes place abruptly if the temperature increases by as little as 1°C. Therefor climate heating present a major risk to these reptiles. 


Story contribution:

Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr
Tissue Culture & Art Project
SymbioticA, The Centre for Excellence in Biological Arts
School of Human Sciences + School of Design
The University of Western Australia

Back to Life Forms Exhibition Page