The Giant Leatherback Turtle

The Giant Leatherback TurtleAbout Giant Leatherback turtle: Giant Leatherback turtles are named for their shell. Their shells are leather-like rather than hard, like other turtles. They are the largest of the seven species of sea turtles on the planet and also the most long-ranging.
Conservation Status:

  • IUCN Status: Vulnerable
  • Wildlife Protection Act,1972: Schedule I

Distribution: They are found in all oceans except the Arctic and the Antarctic.

Characteristics:

  • Nesting: In the Indian Ocean, their nesting sites are only in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Further, the surveys conducted in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are of the view that it could be among the most important colonies of the Leatherback globally.
  • Uniqueness: Leatherbacks have been viewed as unique among extant reptiles. They are able to maintain high body temperatures using metabolically generated heat.
  • Swimming Pattern: A project was set up at West Bay in A&N islands to monitor the leatherback turtle. It has been found that the numbers of female turtle nesting here are significant. After that, they swim towards the western coast of Australia and southwest towards the eastern coast of Africa.
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