Friday, September 10, 2010

Green Sea Turtle

Green Sea Turtles are found throughout the world's tropical and subtropical seas. They are a migratory species, moving many miles each year between feeding and nesting areas. They can grow quite large, with adults reaching 5ft and weighing over 500lbs. Green Sea Turtles are omnivorous, consuming sea plants as well as crustaceans.

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Female Green Sea Turtles do usually not lay eggs every year, those males try and breed yearly. Females are often on a breeding cycle that ranges from every 2 to 4 years. When females do lay eggs, they spend about two hours to lay clutch containing up to 200 of them. These eggs incubate for 45-75 days, after which the young turtles must make the often deadly march to the sea.

Baby Sea Turtles have countless predators both in an out of the water, including gulls, opossums, sharks, rats, and dolphins. A large percentage of the hatchlings will not make it to adulthood. Green Sea Turtles do not become sexually mature until they are at least twenty years old. They can live as long as eighty years.

Green Sea Turtles have seen a major population decline over the past 100 years. Egg harvesting, accidental capture by fishing, and disease have led to their decline. They are now currently protected by numerous agencies worldwide, and they are listed in Appendix I of CITES.

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