March 17, 2006—In biology, two heads are
rarely better than
one. But this unusual golden coin turtle, found in China, appears to be
doing just fine. A businessman from the city of Qingdao says he bought
the reptile at an animal market last year.
According to press reports, the turtle's two heads cooperate well and
can even eat at the same time. Its owner says the reptile eats more
than one-headed turtles do and has grown over the past year.
The creature most likely developed its unusual anatomy while still in
the egg. Its embryo began to split in two—the process that
gives rise to identical twins—but then failed to fully