August 13, 2018
Although many people refer to all tortoises, terrapins, and turtles as turtles, in reality, the word turtle is more accurately used for aquatic reptiles with a carapace and other turtle features. Aquatics include mud and musk turtles, pitted shell turtles, pond turtles, terrapins, snapping turtles, softshell turtles, a few smaller varieties and sea turtles.
Sea turtles are turtles that don’t live in freshwater but live most or all of the time in ocean waters. Sea turtles can be divided into species that belong to the families Dermochelyidae and Cheloniidae. The Dermochelyidae family only has one unusual turtle which is the leatherback sea turtle, known for its unusual leather-like scales and skin. The family Cheloniidae includes several other sea turtle species. So, for a more specific list of all the sea turtles still living and known today:
Known for the unusual leather-like surface and large size. They can reach thousands of pounds in weight. They are also one of the largest reptiles alive today. They love to eat jellyfish although these are rough on their digestive systems.
A turtle that many people think of when they imagine a sea turtle. They are large turtles of several hundred pounds and they eat sea grass and algae that helps give them their green color. These turtles can dive deep and stay underwater for long periods of time.
Moderately sized turtles that live in coastal waters around Australia, Indonesia, and New Guinea. They live a long time and tend to seek isolation.
Large-headed turtles with heart-shaped bodies that are moderate in size. These turtles seek out beaches and they are common in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. These turtles mature very slowly and aren’t fully mature until they are over 30 years old.
These also have a heart-shapes shell but have a smaller head with a sharp beak like a hawk. They live in Pacific and Atlantic oceans. They prefer tropical environments and live in shallows.
These are one of the smaller turtles and one of the smallest of the sea turtles. They reside mainly in the Gulf of Mexico, Florida and Mediterranean waters. They have a shorter life span that some sea turtles.
Olive-colored turtles that are small compared to some sea turtles and live in mainly Pacific waters. They like to eat jellyfish and crustaceans but will eat algae if they must. They lay large numbers of eggs.
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