An appreciation post about those long lasting and amazing creatures, that we’re lucky to observe often as a little bonus on our tours. Sadly, we humans and our industrial outcomes show the biggest threat to seaturtles and after they have survived dinosaurs, continent shifts and ice ages, it is yet unclear weather turtles will survive the human ruled era of the Holocene. Belonging to the paraphilic class of reptiles, turtles are air-breathing and cold- blooded, which is the main reason why we find them resting at the water surface, breathing and warming up in the sunshine. In a wake state, a turtle can hold its breath up to 40min, while asleep it can even last up to a few hours when its metabolisms slows down rapidly. Turtles feed on jellyfish, crustaceans, seagrass and sponges. The danger lies in the fact, that often turtles can not differentiate between a jellyfish and plastic bags or particles and end up swallowing a life threatening amount of plastic. Studys have shown that every sixth turtles died of plastic ingestion and also there probably is no turtle without microplastic in their guts.
Those number only aim to raise little awareness about our own use and consumption, aswell as the way we reduce, reuse and recycle. Other threats include entanglement in fishing nets and hunt.
To finish off, a fun fact about seaturtles: To prevent dehydration, they drink seawater and have saltglands located inside their eyes, that are in fact larger than their brain. So for every liter of saltwater ingested, they excrete ~500ml of tears that is twice as concentrated in ions, gaining 500ml of freshwater.
Crazy what nature has invented, right ?
By Paulina Kalita