You may have seen a couple of videos where turtles or tortoises attack black colors shoes on the internet. In the videos, tortoises show indifference to other colors but attack a black object. So, do turtles hate the color black? Are turtles racist?
It isn’t scientifically proven that turtles hate black colors. But it is also true that some turtles have shown hostility to black or dark colors. However, that doesn’t mean turtles are racists!
There can be a few reasons why turtles dislike black colors. In this article, I will explain the reasons for you.
Are Turtles Racist?
So, why did the tortoises in the TikTok videos show such hostility towards the black shoe? You may have seen most of the comments jokingly calling the tortoise racist. You are probably curious about the real reason for such a bizarre act. It might be funny for humans, but it is a serious matter for a turtle.
We must understand that turtles do not have the same cognitive capacity as humans. Moreover, they do not perceive colors the same way humans do. Turtles have an extra receptor gene called CYP2J19. Therefore, turtles see things a little more reddish compared to our vision.
Turtles do not hate the color black the way racists do. Some turtles can attack black objects out of fear of being attacked. Yes, they associate the color black with the color of their predators.
Why Do Turtles Hate the Black Color?
If you think carefully, you will see that most turtle predators are black or dark in color. For example, some snakes and birds, like crows, are black. Other predators like coyotes, raccoons, and crocodiles also have dark colors. It is understandable that black objects can remind turtles about most of their predators.
Besides, tortoises have black as the dominant color on their shells. The object’s shape can be another reason tortoises attacked black color in the videos. Turtles cannot tolerate each other much. They may attack an object thinking it to be another turtle or animal.
So, turtles do not exactly hate black colors. At least most turtles do not. Some turtles attack black color objects because they think the object is some kind of predator. The black color can stress a turtle and make them scared.
Again, most turtles prefer escaping or getting in their shells to protect themselves from predators. They fight back only when they have no other way to defend themselves.
Before You Go
Want to know more about how turtles view their surroundings? Check the following article about how turtles see in the dark.