There are 7 species of sea turtles: Green, Hawksbill, Leatherback, Loggerhead, Olive Ridley, Kemp’s Ridley and Flatback.
All except the Flatback sea turtle can be found in the oceans surrounding the United States.
Almost all species of sea turtles are listed as Endangered.
There are many threats facing sea turtles. Some of these threats are caused by humans and include, bycatch by fishing practices, entanglement in fishing gear, habitat destruction, nest disturbance and climate change.
The sex of sea turtles depends on the temperature of the nest they are incubated in. Cooler temperatures result in more males and warmer temperatures result in more females. Increasing temperatures as a result of climate change are causing the temperature of the nests to be warmer resulting in more females being born than males.
Sea turtles nest and lay their eggs on beaches around the world and females return to the same beach that they hatched on to lay their eggs. Development and human activity has drastically altered and destroyed many nesting beaches.
Learn more about the many threats facing these creatures here
You can help reduce the amount of sea turtles being caught in fishing gear and preserve their nesting beaches by buying seafood that is certified to be sustainably caught, by reporting sea turtle tracks to local conservation organizations (because a nest is most likely nearby & most of these organizations protect them) and by not disturbing any known nests and holding others accountable that do disturb them by reporting their behavior to local authorities.
Sea turtles are protected by the law in the United States so it is illegal to catch or harass them in any way. If you encounter a sea turtle or a nest please do not approach either.
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