What is the Journey of Sea Turtles and why are They Becoming Extinct? Ariadna Pastor Lamberri
What is the Journey of Sea Turtles and why are They Becoming Extinct?
James R. Spotila is a biology professor at Drexel University who also happens to be one of the world’s leading sea turtle biologist and researcher. He has also written the award-winning book Sea Turtles: A Complete Guide to Their Biology, Behavior, and Conservation. He firmly believes that “these marine reptiles, which have been on this planet since long before the first human arrived, are much too close to the edge of extinction” (Spotila, 2011, p.1). Although he thinks the situation is of high importance, he reveals that there is hope. “No matter what the problems are, I believe that we can make this a better world for sea turtles” (Spotila, 2011, p.1). The reason why I pointed out these few quotes from his book’s introduction is to take a closer look at the passion that he has towards these animals that form part of his everyday life. It is a quite amazing thing what he does; he spends his life researching for new inventions or opportunities to rescue sea turtles from their dark destiny which is set to be extinction. He has made me appreciate these fine creatures by narrating heart touching stories in which scientists, professional conservationists, volunteers, students, and concerned citizens have “formed a loosely affiliated army trying to hold a line of protection around the remaining sea turtle populations (Spotila, 2011,p.2.).
There are seven species of sea turtles roaming the world; they are all unique and different in their own ways. They are all descendants of a small species that accidentally entered the big sea (p.3). Starting from smallest to largest, Olive Ridley Turtle would be the first one with a shell length of twenty-two to thirty inches and a mass varying from eighty to ninety-five pounds. Then it is the Kemp’s Ridley Turtle with twenty-four to thirty inches of length and eighty to one hundred pounds. Kemp’s Ridley is followed by the Hawksbill Turtle which is thirty to thirty-five inches long and weight from ninety-five to one hundred and sixty-five pounds. The Flatback Turtle is next, measuring thirty to thirty-nine inches of length and weighing from one hundred fifty four pounds to one hundred and eight nine pounds. In fifth place we have the green turtle the most common turtle with a shell length of thirty-two to forty-eight inches and with a mass of one hundred forty-four pounds to four hundred and four pounds. Following we have the Loggerhead turtle whose length varies from thirty-four inches high to forty-nine inches. She weighs from around one hundred and seventy-six to four hundred and forty pounds. And last but not least the longest turtle is Leatherback Turtle, having a length of fifty-two to seventy inches and weighing five hundred fifty pounds to nine hundred and seven pounds (p.2-7).
From this point we know the approximate size of each species of turtles. There are many differences between these rare species and many interesting facts about every one of these turtles. For example, “The Kemp’s Ridley Turtle is named after Richard Kemp, one of the first researchers of this specie.” “Both of the Ridley species display a nesting phenomenon that allows as many as 100,000 turtles emerge from the surf to nest.” (p.3). “Green Sea Turtles are the most common ones because they are the first ones seen by the scuba divers and snorkelers in the Caribbean waters. They are also known to outlive humans by not laying their first eggs until they are thirty-five years old, and growing to several hundred pounds” (p.4). “Ridley and loggerheads are carnivorous and eat crabs and shellfish” (p.4) they are the only turtles that follow that diet. “The Hawksbill turtles are the ones responsible for all the tortoise shell jewelry thanks to their beautiful shells and their population has been reduced in the...
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