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Turtle shells are basically exoskeletons.  Everyone knows that.  In fact, I wonder if there is a skin analog on the outside of the shell?

Anyway, you see parts of turtle shells everywhere, the roughly rectangular “rib” and “backbone” pieces laying separated, with the knit-lines visible.

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But here…

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…you can clearly see that the “ribs” pin-fit into a circumferential ring, creating a classic tensile ring/compressive web steel-tired-wagon-wheel structure.  Obviously, a turtle shell is properly engineered.

We never find turtle heads on the beach.  Dunno why.

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