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Five Facts about the Sea Turtle

Marine Life medium

35th edition of Marine Life monthly post. Marine Life post published every 19th of the month. It aims to share information about the marine life species and to promote their conservation. All images and videos in this post are taken by Indah Susanti unless stated otherwise.

It’s always delightful to see the sea turtles during my scuba diving trip. The above video was taken in Apo Island (the Philippines). The sea turtle is a marine reptile, a reptile that has adapted for aquatic life in a marine environment (source). Adaptation, evolution, the fact is the sea turtles have existed since the prehistoric era. The world’s oldest sea turtle fossil showed the age of 120 million years (in the year 2015’s report). Let me share some of their facts, perhaps you have already known but I do hope you still enjoy their images in this post 🙂

 

An individual sea turtle is identified from their faces

Yes, that’s how the scientists tell the turtles apart from each other. Just like humans, the turtles have their own individual face. We can observe them through their black plates on their faces (cheek area). The following are two different turtles, on the left was a turtle in Indonesia and the right one was seen in the Philippines. Can you see the differences?

 

There are seven different species of sea turtles

While they are mostly looked alike, there are actually seven different species of sea turtles. They are the Green, Hawksbill, Kemp’s Ridley, Leatherback, Loggerhead, Olive ridley, and Flatback. All, except Flatback sea turtle, are usually migrate all over the globe.

I think this one is a sea green turtle. The turtle was seen in Indonesia.

 

The sea turtles migrate up to 10,000 miles per year

They migrate every year for nesting or for jellyfish (food) and then they return to their birth beaches. It is still unknown how the turtles navigate themselves during the migration.

This one was seen in Galapagos Islands.

 

The sex of the turtle is determined by temperature

The sex of the turtle is determined after the fertilization following the incubation’s temperature (the sands of the beach’ temperature where the lay their eggs). Female hatchlings are more likely when the eggs in the incubation temperature above 31 °C (87.8 °F). Meanwhile, the male hatchlings happened in the cooler incubation temperature. The global warming might have affected the sea turtles population’s gender due to this matter. As the beaches get warmer, there will be more females or, all turtles in the future are going to be females!

Hawkbill sea turtle

 

The sea turtle eats jellyfish

There are not many jellyfish predators and the sea turtles are among the few. The saddest thing about today’s ocean condition is the high number of man-made plastics products in the ocean as marine debris, and the turtles are unable to distinguish the jellyfish versus the plastic bag. There are some findings of dead sea turtles due to the plastic bags consumption.

Marine debris and human’s (careless) waste management are serious issues that affect our ocean and its residents. A recent research predicted that in the year of 2050, there will be more plastic than fish in our ocean (source). It’s a frightening prediction, noting that 70% of our planet is actually the ocean. Without turtles, jellyfish will take over the ocean as well. I hope we are not too late to prevent it from happening.

 

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Some images in this blog post are for sale in a larger size (4608×3456) (<5MB) without watermark. The images are free for commercial use and editing. The digital file (.JPG) will be sent via email after the order. Please contact me if you have a problem with processing the order. No refund after the JPG file sent.

P1011960 – Sea Turtle

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P1012004 – Sea Turtle

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PA221613 – Sea Turtle

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p6220992 – Sea Turtle

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63 Comments »

    • I find it not easy to distinguish as well 😀 it took me a while to figure it out, but I was told that the researchers using image identification to help them in identify the individual 😀

  1. What ana amazing set of sea turtle photos, Indah. Each one is so crisp, bold, vivid and stunning in colour. So interesting to read that the sex of the turtle is determined by the sea temperature. That is the marvel of both nature and science. Lol, I can’t tell the difference between the turtles in the Philippines and Indonesia. They look the same to me 😀

  2. Bonjour chère Indah, je suis émerveillée de ce que tu fais, la plongée sous-marine 🙂 Tes photos sont superbes et que c’est beau de voir les fonds sous-marins.
    Les tortues sont de toute beauté. La nature est vraiment très belle.
    Bisous ♥

  3. Thank you for this beautiful and informative post, Indah. I am very worried too about both the plastic in our seas and the global warming trend. We have several Loggerhead nests every year right here on our beach…apparently those sea turtles were born here. A few years ago we found a dead Loggerhead on the beach and I remember wondering if they also come to their birth beach to die.

    • I think that is the case, that they always returned to their birth beach at some point. It is an interesting fact that a migrated animal who is, in the end, returning home after traveling around the world 🙂 I wonder how many species that actually do the same as well, and how they can navigate themselves? Did they lose? So many questions…Thank you so much, I hope the best for them ❤

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