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“It is strange to think of a sea turtle as an ecosystem,” says Amanda Feuerstein, program coordinator and research assistant at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, “but they are…they have all of...
No iguana wants to be cooked alive on a hot rock and then served up as dinner...
Endangered Pacific leatherback sea turtles now have nearly 42,000 square miles...
On the Galapagos Islands, William Dampier wrote excitedly of the giant...

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A diet of algae and seagrasses gives this turtle ( Chelonia mydas ) greenish colored fat—and its name. Weighing as much as 500 pounds, the threatened green sea turtle lives its life at sea, with only females coming to shore to...
Like other sea snakes , the turtle-headed sea snake ( Emydocephalus...
“I slowly approached this bird resting on the back of a turtle just under...

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There are seven species of sea turtles, which are marine reptiles that need to breathe air to survive. Six of the seven...
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature ( IUCN ) maintains the Red List of Threatened Species , an inventory of the global conservation status of plants and animals. In a 2010 study ,...
A spectacled caiman (Caiman crocodiles) patrols a salty pond at the Smithsonian Institution’s research station in Bocas del Toro, Panama. A bony ridge between its eyes gives it the appearance of...
Sea turtles may have survived the planetary changes that killed the dinosaurs, but now they are threatened by fisheries. It's estimated that some 4,600 sea turtles are killed by fishing nets and...
"As part of a site fidelity and migration study, this Hawksbill Sea Turtle has a small transmitter that sends its positions to orbiting satellites so that scientists can learn more of their habitat...
Leatherback sea turtles ( Dermochelys coriacea ) are listed as critically endangered by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. The primary threats to leatherbacks are interactions with fisheries...
A giant tortoise subspecies ( Geochelone nigra vicina ) lives on Isabela Island in the Galapagos. Cerro Azul, estimated to be about 350,000 years old, is one of six volcanoes on the island.
Hawksbill turtles ( Eretmochelys imbricata ) are small to medium-sized turtles, but can get as large as 200 lbs (91 kg). Adults live among healthy coral reef communities, feeding primarily on sponges...
"Leatherback turtles are the oldest, deepest-diving and widest-ranging of all sea turtles, with a lineage that dates back over 100 million years. We can only imagine all that this species has seen...
Adult green sea turtles ( Chelonia mydas ) spend most of their time grazing in seagrass meadows. It's estimated that before Columbus arrived in America in 1492, the number of green turtles supported...
How do we know where ocean animals swim day and night? Scientists are getting snapshots into the daily lives of whales , sharks , and even fish by tagging the animals to track their movements. You’ve...
“It is strange to think of a sea turtle as an ecosystem,” says Amanda Feuerstein, program coordinator and research assistant at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, “but they are…...
Amanda Feuerstein with a nesting olive ridley ( Lepidochelys olivacea ). Feuerstein is a co-author of a study that surveyed algae, crustaceans, mollusks, and other epibionts that live on olive ridley...
Kemp's ridley sea turtles ( Lepidochelys kempii ) often emerge from their nests during the day, which is a rare (and dangerous) thing for sea turtle hatchlings! They are the most critically...
The Sundarbans National Park site in India was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1987. The site, located in the Ganges delta, contains the world's largest mangrove forest and hosts a number of...
A heavily oiled Kemp's Ridley turtle recovered near the Deepwater Horizon/BP accident site.
There are seven species of sea turtles, which are marine reptiles that need to breathe air to survive. Six of the seven species are found in US waters, and the flatback turtle is only found in the...
Olive ridley turtles ( Lepidochelys olivacea ) are the smallest marine turtle, living in warm waters close to shore as adults. Female olive ridleys take part in mass nestings that can involve 150,000...
From parrotfish that cover themselves in a blanket of their own mucus to tiny pygmy sea horses, there are some bizarre sea creatures that live in coral reefs . In this slideshow you can explore some...
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