All About Leatherback Turtles


Leatherback turtles are the largest sea turtle species. They are so huge that their own body weight could kill them. They weigh 1,948 pounds and can grow up to nine feet in length. Leatherback turtles have soft shells, called carapace. They are covered with cartilage, fat, and rubbery skin. Their front flippers are half as long as their whole body. Leatherback turtles have big eyes so they can see in dark places. These are the basic physical characteristics of the leatherback turtle.

Leatherbacks eat jellyfish, crustaceans, and molluscs. They have no teeth, but they have sharp beaks. Backwards, pointed spikes in their throats help them swallow prey. Leatherback turtles live in the Indian, Atlantic and Pacific Oceans as well as the Mediterranean Sea. They typically live in colder waters than other sea turtles.

The leatherback turtle often lives to a hundred years or more. These turtles breed every two to three years. They only nest on tropical beaches and they lay 900 eggs per season, however, climbing on land can be dangerous because they are so big that they can crush their own lungs.

I think we can agree that this is one of the most fascinating turtles out of the sea turtle species.

[Source: The Encyclopedia of Animals]

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