Location: Mesoamerican Reef, Coastal East Africa, Coral Triangle, The Galápagos, Gulf of California
Population: Between 85,000 and 90,000 nesting females
There are seven species of Sea Turtles found around the world: Hawksbill, Loggerhead, Leatherback, Olive ridley, Green, Flatback, Kemp's ridley. Nearly all species of sea turtle are now classified as endangered, with three of the seven existing species being critically endangered. The sex of baby sea turtles are determined by temperature. With global warming affecting not only sea temperature but land temps as well, the nesting ground are warmer skewing the sex ratios, resulting in more female sea turtles. The decline in their population are affected by many things, encroachment of nesting grounds, by catch- where incidental sea turtles are capture for example is commercial fishing nets, as well thousands of turtle are caught and used in illegal trade, for direct consumption of their meat, eggs and other uses of the shell and leather made from their skin.
According to the Turtle Conservation Society, most turtle species live from 10 to 80 years but some of the large species of sea turtle can live to be 400-500 years old! Pretty impressive since only one hatchling in one thousand, and one in 10,000 will survive to adulthood They don't reach sexual maturity till they are between 20-30 year old. Females will return to the same beach year after year where they were hatched, to lay their own eggs and bury them in sand ‘nests’. Marine turtles’ amazing ability to navigate comes from their sensitivity to the Earth's magnetic fields. More fun facts turtles do not have teeth, but a sharp beak made of the same material as your fingernails. They also have tails and some claws on their flippers. They cannot retract into their shell like many terrestrial turtles. The largest species of sea turtle in the oceans today are the Leatherback turtles. They can be as large at 6-9 ft long and weight up to 1500 lbs!
Hope you enjoyed some fun facts out the glorious sea turtles.Click here to learn more about the Sea Turtles, what is being done to help their populations, and how you might get involved. (source: WWF, Factretriever, Aurifil)
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