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Wildlife in Italy: Green Turtle

Wildlife in Italy: Green Turtle


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Systematic classification and distribution

Class: Reptiles
Order: Testudines
suborders: Cryptodira
Superfamily: Chelonididea
Family: Chelonioidae
Kind: Chelonia
Species: C. mydas

It lives in the tropical warm seas, but has also been spotted in Sardinia and in the Gulf of Manfredonia. She is an excellent swimmer and makes long migrations to reproduce. Migrating to the place of birth to lay eggs is called "homing".

Distinctive characters

The shell or armor is flattened to allow good hydrodynamics.
Carapace and skin appear olive green with yellowish streaks. An adult specimen reaches 150 cm in length.
The beak is not curved like a hook like that of the Caretta caretta.

Biology

It feeds on aquatic plants that grow in submerged grasslands, in particular marine phanerogams.
Sexual maturity in turtles is not strictly linked to age, but is reached when the plate reaches a certain size.
The female lays her eggs on the mainland, in a nest dug in the sand. The eggs are spherical and have a flexible shell to facilitate deposition and hatch in about two months. The chicks do not need parental care, but are easy prey for birds and marine predators. Many are born, but only a small part manages to reach adulthood.

Green turtle (photo www.nmfs.noaa.gov)

Green turtle (photo www.nmfs.noaa.gov)

curated by Ivana Stella


Video: Octopuses 101. Nat Geo Wild (May 2022).