Male or Female? I'm struggling to see the difference.

saginawhxc

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Male or Female? I'm struggling to see the difference.

And that is a sentence I never thought I would say out loud.

Honestly though, let's kill two birds with one stone. One, you can maybe help me identify these guys if it's not too early, and secondly and much more important maybe you can help me see the things and differences I should be looking for. I've been looking at the internet and just getting frustrated. Even here I'm struggling to find the right answers.

I was able to find what I was looking for when I sexed my Russian. He was a male. That seemed pretty simple.

Anyways I took in these two tortoises. They are five years old and both just over 12 inches long. Both plastrons seem slightly concave but not enough for me to tell you that it is definitive, just enough for me to say it is there. The previous owners were pretty sure one was a male, but they weren't sure about the second one. My girl and my step daughter say I have to solve the mystery (if I can) so they can properly name him/her. IMG_8334.jpg IMG_8330.jpg
 

tortoise5643

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From this angle they both look female. Can you get a picture of the tails?
 

Tom

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They are still immature, but the tail tells the tale.

Adults are very easy to sex. The anal scutes form a wide open "V" in the males and a distinct "U" shape in the females. Males typically have much larger gular scutes. Plastron concavity will be pronounced and obvious in a male. Beyond all of that, males have a big long 2-3" tail while females have a tiny little nub of a tail, less than a half inch.

I've posted pics before, but I can't find them…

The reason you are having trouble is because yours are still immature and have not developed their secondary sexual characteristics. Age doesn't matter, its more about size. Usually by 14-16" you can tell what they are, but I've seen a few that were tough to tell even at that size. In a couple of years, you'll be able to see it easily in your tortoises.
 

GingerLove

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They both look like males to me, (judging by the anal scutes) but we really need a picture with the tail out. Maybe if you soak them? Nice, healthy looking torts, by the way. :)
 

cmacusa3

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I agree to young to tell, but my guess would be top male bottom female. They seem small for 5 plus.
 

saginawhxc

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Thank you Tom. This is exactly what I'm looking for, direct information on exactly what I'm supposed to be looking at. I'm sure it's been said on this forum before but I was having trouble finding it. Plus I would rather know exactly what to look for rather than just be told what it is.

Thank you to everybody else too on the guesses. I'm not hung up on gender, but we have an extremely gender obsessed nine year old girl in the house that is absolutely in love with tortoise number two. So by golly whether it is a boy or a girl it better have a gender appropriate name. I think we should just name it Pat.
 

saginawhxc

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Steph has decided she is sticking to a new theme for naming our pets. The Russian is finally named Winchester. The tortoise in the first picture on this thread will now be known as Frank and the second tortoise is Hot Lips.
 

Big Charlie

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Steph has decided she is sticking to a new theme for naming our pets. The Russian is finally named Winchester. The tortoise in the first picture on this thread will now be known as Frank and the second tortoise is Hot Lips.
Those are great names! Frank will probably end up female and Hot Lips male. Not as bad as my male rabbit named Pansy.
 

Yvonne G

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Both have very small gulars, and the anal scutes on both point straight back, not out. These are female characteristics. But, like Tom said, most all tortoises look female when very young/small. So the characteristics may change as they grow. The anal scutes on the one in the bottom picture sort of look like they may be starting to grow outward (male), but for now they both look female.
 
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