Sea turtle, Superfamily Chelonioidea, that is also known as the marine turtle is a reptile of the suborder Cryptodira and of the order Testudines. There are 7 species of sea turtles including the green turtle, loggerhead turtle, Kemp’s ridley turtle, olive ridley, hawksbill, flatback, and leatherback.
The Endangered Species Act lists the 6 sea turtle species, which are present in the United States waters, as threatened or/and endangered. These include leatherback, olive ridley, Kemp’s ridley, hawksbill, green sea turtle, and loggerhead. The Flatback, the last sea turtle species, exists in the waters of Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and Australia. The categories of sea turtles are dermochelyid (leathery-shelled) and cheloniid (hard-shelled). The leatherback sea turtle is the only dermochelyid species.
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Dermochelyidae, Cheloniidae
COMMON NAME: Sea Turtles
WEIGHT: 32-680 kg
SIZE: 61-213 cm long
LIFE EXPECTANCY: unknown
CURRENT POPULATION: Decreasing
Hawksbill, olive ridley, green, Kemp’s ridley, loggerhead, and leatherback swim the planet’s waters. These 6 species of sea turtles exist in every ocean except the Antarctic and Arctic. The flatback, the last one, only exists in the waters around Australia. The leatherback, with 907 kgs, is the largest sea turtle. It has an almost an elastic texture to touch as well as a somewhat flexible shell, instead of having a bony, hard one, which is made of scutes, thick plates that other sea turtles have.
There are incredible long migrations that sea turtles make between breeding and feeding areas. The leatherback, for example, goes approximately 3,700 miles each way. Female leatherbacks dig a hole onto the shore after they are got mated at sea, to lay their eggs. Then they settle their eggs (up to one hundred), cover them back up, then get back to the sea.
The eggs hatch after about 2 months, at night, the young turtles move from the beach into the sea. That journey would be full of dangers as these tiny babies can be hunted by crabs, seabirds, and other predators. Also, sea turtles could be confused and heading the wrong way because of the homes, hotels, and other buildings’ lights. However, the hatchings can be guided to the sea by natural light on the horizon.
There are many practices that make 6 of the 7 these species are assorted as critically endangered, endangered, or threatened such as climate change, pollution, bycatch in fishing nets, and humans hunting. The outcome of the hatchlings’ sex is affected during the hot weather as the sand they’re laid in gets warmer.
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