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Turtle

For other uses, see Turtle (disambiguation).
Families
Testudines, Chelonia

Turtles are reptiles of the order Testudines (all living turtles belong to the crown group Chelonia), most of whose body is shielded by a special bony or cartilagenous shell developed from their ribs. The term turtle is usually used for the aquatic species, though aquatic fresh water turtles are also called terrapins. The term is sometimes used (esp. in North America) to refer to all members of the order, including tortoises, which are predominantly land-based. The order of Testudines includes both extant (living) and extinct species. About 300 species are alive today. Some species of turtles are highly endangered.

Description

All turtles have a protective shell around their bodies. The top part of the shell is called the carapace, the bottom is called the plastron, and the two are connected by a bridge. Some are known to be able to breathe through their rectums as well. Reference the Rheodytes leukops species.

Sea turtles grow to large sizes and live in the oceans in the temperate and tropical regions of Earth. Pond turtles (terrapins) are usually much smaller, while some land terrapins (tortoises) are as large as sea turtles. The sizes of turtles vary from a few centimetres (forest and jungle species) to two metres (the leatherback turtle and the Galapagos tortoise).

Turtles generally live a long time; some individuals are known to have lived longer than 150 years. The oldest tortoise on record is Tui Malila, known to have lived at least 188 years.

Sea turtles lay their eggs on dry sandy beaches. The eggs of the largest species are spherical, while the eggs of the rest are elongated. Their albumen is white and will not coagulate when cooked because of the protein it contains which is different to that of bird eggs. Turtle eggs prepared to eat consist mainly of yolk. In some species, temperature of the egg during development determines whether an egg develops into a male or a female: a higher temperature causes a female, a lower temperature causes a male.

Although they spend large proportions of their lives underwater, turtles are air-breathing reptiles, and must surface at regular intervals to refill their lungs with fresh air. However, aquatic respiration in Australian freshwater turtles is currently being studied. Some species have large cloacal cavities lined with many finger-like projections. These projections, called "papillae", have a rich blood supply, and increase the surface area of the cloaca. The turtles can take up dissolved oxygen from the water through these papillae, in much the same way that fish use gills.

Turtles have a gelatinous substance in their upper and lower shell, called calipash and calipee respectively, the calipash being of a dull greenish and the calipee of a light yellow color.

Evolution

The first turtles are believed to have existed in the era of the dinosaurs, 200 million years ago. Their exact ancestry is disputed. It was believed that they are the only surviving branch of the ancient clade Anapsida, which includes groups such as procolophonoids, millerettids, protorothyrids and pareiasaurs. All Anapsid skulls lack a temporal opening, while all other extant amniotes have temporal openings (although in mammals the hole has become the zygoid arch). Most anapsids became extinct in the late Permian period, except procolophonoids and possibly the precursors of the testudines (turtles).

However, it was recently suggested that the Anapsid-like turtle skull may be due to convergent evolution rather than to anapsid descent. More recent phylogenetic studies with this in mind placed turtles firmly within diapsids, slightly closer to Squamata than to Archosauria. All molecular studies have strongly upheld this new phylogeny, though some place turtles closer to Archosauria. Re-analysis of prior phylogenies suggests that they classified turtles as anapsids both because they assumed this classification (most of them studying what sort of anapsid turtles are) and because they did not sample fossil and extant taxa were broadly enough for constructing the cladogram. While the issue is far from resolved, most scientists now lean towards a Diapsid origin for turtles.

Order Testudines - Turtles

Gulf Coast Box Turtle, Terrapene carolina major (Emydidae) A slider of genus Trachemys A Leatherback Sea Turtle. Photo credit: NOAA

Suborder Paracryptodira (extinct)

Suborder Cryptodira

Suborder Pleurodira


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Suborder Pleurodira. However, the Washington Redhawks' star quarterback is a mobile, left-handed passer named "Mike Mexico". Suborder Cryptodira. Due to Midway losing their NFL license (EA Sports now has exclusive NFL licensing), all teams and players in the game are fictitious. Suborder Paracryptodira (extinct)
. In a related note, the video game developer Midway Games alluded to Michael Vick and his Ron Mexico alter-ego in their Blitz: The League title. While the issue is far from resolved, most scientists now lean towards a Diapsid origin for turtles. The status of the lawsuit is pending.

Re-analysis of prior phylogenies suggests that they classified turtles as anapsids both because they assumed this classification (most of them studying what sort of anapsid turtles are) and because they did not sample fossil and extant taxa were broadly enough for constructing the cladogram. However, due to the media interest surrounding the case, the National Football League began disallowing the use of the jersey/name combination two days after the lawsuit. All molecular studies have strongly upheld this new phylogeny, though some place turtles closer to Archosauria. This led to a deluge of fans ordering customized #7 Atlanta Falcons jerseys on NFL.com with the name "Mexico" on the back. More recent phylogenetic studies with this in mind placed turtles firmly within diapsids, slightly closer to Squamata than to Archosauria. Elliot further alleged that Vick had visited clinics under the alias "Ron Mexico" to get treatments, thus he knew of his condition. However, it was recently suggested that the Anapsid-like turtle skull may be due to convergent evolution rather than to anapsid descent. In March, 2005, a woman named Sonya Elliot filed a civil lawsuit against Michael Vick claiming she contracted genital herpes from him and that Vick failed to inform her that he had the sexually-transmitted disease.

Most anapsids became extinct in the late Permian period, except procolophonoids and possibly the precursors of the testudines (turtles). However, most of the commercial's effects were computer-generated; Vick's athleticism and arm strength were clearly exaggerated to the realm of near-improbability. All Anapsid skulls lack a temporal opening, while all other extant amniotes have temporal openings (although in mammals the hole has become the zygoid arch). Vick also appeared in a Powerade television commercial featuring a handheld camera view of him during practice knocking receivers off their feet with his passes and then throwing a ball 100+ yards into the upper deck of the stadium. It was believed that they are the only surviving branch of the ancient clade Anapsida, which includes groups such as procolophonoids, millerettids, protorothyrids and pareiasaurs. Without Vick, the Falcons were dismal. Their exact ancestry is disputed. However, Vick was struck with a perceived curse surrounding players who have appeared on the cover of previous and later installments of the franchise, as he suffered the aforementioned broken leg.

The first turtles are believed to have existed in the era of the dinosaurs, 200 million years ago. EA Sports chose Michael Vick to be on the cover of their popular Madden NFL 2004 game, in which he was infamously almost unstoppable. Turtles have a gelatinous substance in their upper and lower shell, called calipash and calipee respectively, the calipash being of a dull greenish and the calipee of a light yellow color. However, regardless of the controversy that surrounds his playing style, Michael Vick continues to woo crowds with his explosive style of play. The turtles can take up dissolved oxygen from the water through these papillae, in much the same way that fish use gills. Following Vick's selection, sports columnist Tim Cowlishaw of the Dallas Morning News called Vick "the most overrated player in the League.". These projections, called "papillae", have a rich blood supply, and increase the surface area of the cloaca. He also has over 500 yards rushing with 6 touchdowns.

Some species have large cloacal cavities lined with many finger-like projections. Vick was selected to the Pro Bowl for the 2005 season, a controversial pick, since Vick's season of 13 touchdowns and 12 interceptions and a little over 2,000 passing yards would be considered, at best, an average performance for a quarterback. However, aquatic respiration in Australian freshwater turtles is currently being studied. Some fans have also reacted negatively to the constant media hype that surrounds Vick, and feel that an over-exuberant American sports media anointed Michael Vick as the best player in football long before he deserved such an accolade. Although they spend large proportions of their lives underwater, turtles are air-breathing reptiles, and must surface at regular intervals to refill their lungs with fresh air. His best passing season came in 2002, when he amassed a quarterback rating of only 81.6. In some species, temperature of the egg during development determines whether an egg develops into a male or a female: a higher temperature causes a female, a lower temperature causes a male. A few critics have been far harsher, labeling Michael Vick an athlete who happens to play quarterback rather than a true quarterback.

Turtle eggs prepared to eat consist mainly of yolk. Some critics have countered that it's unfair to cast the blame on the receivers alone, since Vick remains the common denominator in the Falcons offense. Their albumen is white and will not coagulate when cooked because of the protein it contains which is different to that of bird eggs. Arguably, Vick's favorite target is tight end Alge Crumpler, a very good receiver, but certainly no speedster. The eggs of the largest species are spherical, while the eggs of the rest are elongated. He was released by the organization prior to the 2005 season. Sea turtles lay their eggs on dry sandy beaches. But Price was a massive disappointment, catching just six touchdowns passes over the course of two seasons.

The oldest tortoise on record is Tui Malila, known to have lived at least 188 years. To help remedy this, the Falcons acquired former Buffalo Bills wideout Peerless Price prior to the 2003 season in hopes that he could give Vick a legitimate "deep threat" target. Turtles generally live a long time; some individuals are known to have lived longer than 150 years. Other pundits also believe that the Falcons are relatively weak in quality wide receivers. The sizes of turtles vary from a few centimetres (forest and jungle species) to two metres (the leatherback turtle and the Galapagos tortoise). Vick supporters argue that the quarterback rating formula, which does not take rushing yards into account, is not an accurate benchmark of Vick's performance. Pond turtles (terrapins) are usually much smaller, while some land terrapins (tortoises) are as large as sea turtles. Many critics have stated that, while Michael Vick has a powerful arm, his passes are not nearly as accurate as other top quarterbacks in the league, such as Cincinnati's Carson Palmer or Indianapolis' Peyton Manning, both of whom have better quarterback ratings.

Sea turtles grow to large sizes and live in the oceans in the temperate and tropical regions of Earth. But, ironically, Vick's knee problem forced him to become more of a pocket passer, and his quarterback rating has improved dramatically since his return. Reference the Rheodytes leukops species. In a November, 2005 press conference, Michael Vick scoffed at the notion that he was a weak "pocket" passer. Some are known to be able to breathe through their rectums as well. Young eventually won a Super Bowl and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2005. The top part of the shell is called the carapace, the bottom is called the plastron, and the two are connected by a bridge. Critics cite the leg fracture he suffered in the 2003 pre-season and a knee injury he suffered early in the current season (which reoccurred a few weeks later), that has hampered his mobility throughout the year as prime evidence that Vick needs to learn to "pick his spots", citing the example of Steve Young, another mobile left-handed signal-caller who had a mediocre professional career before being placed in an offensive system that optimized his talents.

All turtles have a protective shell around their bodies. While Michael Vick's athleticism is virtually unparalleled, a frequent criticism is that he puts himself at unnecessary risk of injury and has poor fundamental skills. . His speed always makes him a danger for opposing defenses, and the Falcons are one of the few teams in the NFL to have a large number of specifically-designed running plays for their quarterback. Some species of turtles are highly endangered. Thus, opposing defenses must find ways to constrict Vick's running lanes in order to contain him. About 300 species are alive today. Additionally, he has often been able to buy more time to throw by evading pass rushers with his spectacular agility and speed.

The order of Testudines includes both extant (living) and extinct species. Whereas most quarterbacks are not a major threat to run the ball for a lot of yards, Vick is capable of breaking huge runs from anywhere on the field. in North America) to refer to all members of the order, including tortoises, which are predominantly land-based. Vick's mobility has often caused major problems for opposing defenses, which have to defend against him differently than they would against a conventional-style quarterback. The term is sometimes used (esp. In the 2004 football season (including post season), he rushed for over 1,000 yards, which is a higher rushing total than many running backs in the NFL. The term turtle is usually used for the aquatic species, though aquatic fresh water turtles are also called terrapins. Notable is the fact that while he throws left-handed, he is otherwise right-handed.

Turtles are reptiles of the order Testudines (all living turtles belong to the crown group Chelonia), most of whose body is shielded by a special bony or cartilagenous shell developed from their ribs. Gifted with tremendous speed and mobility, he can engineer big plays with both his arm and his legs. Superfamily Pelomedusoidea. He is considered by many to be the most exciting player in the game of football and he has earned the nickname "Superman". Superfamily Chelonioidea. Vick is noted for his unique, explosive playing style. Superfamily Kinosternoidea. Vick currently resides in Duluth, GA.

Superfamily Trionychoidea. Vick has also become a focal point in the growing rivalry between the Falcons and Carolina Panthers. Superfamily Testudinoidea. Vick's #7 jersey has become one of the best-selling pieces of NFL apparel. Many would argue that Michael Vick has revolutionized the quarterback position and has nearly single-handedly transformed the Falcons from a team with a spotty reputation to one of the rising franchises in the NFL. The Falcons' 2004 season ended with a defeat at the hands of the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC Championship game.

In 2004, he led the Falcons to a record of 11-5, earning a first-round bye in the NFL Playoffs for only the third time in franchise history. Upon his return, the Falcons beat the Carolina Panthers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Jacksonville Jaguars, going 3-1 in the final four games of the 2003 season. However, during a pre-season game against the Baltimore Ravens later that year, Michael Vick fractured his right fibula and missed most of the the regular season. On January 4, 2003, the Vick-led Atlanta Falcons upset the favored Green Bay Packers 27-7 in the NFC playoffs, ending the Packers' undefeated streak at Lambeau Field.

The Falcons selected Michael Vick as the first overall pick, and he made his NFL debut against the San Francisco 49ers. Eventually, San Diego selected Texas Christian running back LaDainian Tomlinson with one of those traded spots. In 2001, the Atlanta Falcons traded receiver Tim Dwight and several draft picks to the San Diego Chargers for their number one selection spot in the NFL draft. Ironically, despite not having played baseball since the eighth grade, Michael Vick was selected by Major League Baseball's Colorado Rockies in the 30th round of the 2000 draft.

Virginia Tech has retired his jersey. After finishing with a 11-1 record and a Gator Bowl MVP award in 2001, Mike decided to take his game to the NFL. It did have its share of highlights, such as his career rushing high of 210 yards against the Boston College Eagles in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. He was favored to win the Heisman Trophy, but a severe ankle sprain kept Vick from living up to the intense media hype.

Michael Vick's sophomore season was among the most anticipated in college football history. Vick was awarded an ESPY as the nation's top college player, the first-ever Archie Griffin Award as college football's valuable player, and finished third in the balloting for the 1999 Heisman Trophy, matching the highest finish ever by a freshman in the voting. He led the NCAA in passing efficiency, setting a record for a freshman (180.4), which was also good enough for the second-highest all-time mark to Shaun King's record from the 1998 season at Tulane. He enjoyed a spectacular freshman season in 1999 leading Virginia Tech to its first-ever 11-0 regular-season record and a spot in the national championship game.

Although Virginia Tech lost, 46-29, Vick was able to bring the team back from a 21 point deficit to take a brief lead. He led the Virginia Tech Hokies to an 11-0 season and to the 2000 Bowl Championship Series national title game in the Nokia Sugar Bowl against Florida State University. His last touchdown was a spectacular flip in which he landed awkardly on his ankle, forcing him to miss the remainder of the game in addition to the following game. He exploded onto the scene in his first collegiate game as a redshirt freshman in 1999 with three rushing TDs, in just over one quarter of play.

After high school, Michael Vick attended Virginia Tech. Due to a disappointing collegiate career, however, Curry's stock, as it pertains to the NFL, dropped significantly, and he was drafted by the Oakland Raiders in the 7th round of the 2002 NFL draft as a wide receiver and kick returner. Curry would go on to play at the University of North Carolina. Although he was, arguably, somewhat overshadowed by quarterback Ronald Curry of Hampton High School in Hampton, Virginia, who would earn Gatorade National Football Player of the Year honors (he was also a first team Parade All-American in basketball).

Michael Vick first came to prominence while at Warwick High School in Newport News, Virginia. He chose football, and basically gave up all other sports in the ninth grade. His mother pushed him to get involved with an after-school activity. But by junior high his adolescent ways got the best of him, and he became a disciplinary problem for his teachers.

As a grade schooler, Michael Vick showed promise in baseball and basketball. . He is the older brother of former Virginia Tech quarterback Marcus Vick and a second cousin of New Orleans Saints quarterback Aaron Brooks. Michael Dwayne Vick (born June 26, 1980 in Newport News, Virginia), is an American football quarterback for the National Football League's Atlanta Falcons.

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