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Sea turtle conservation: 10 ways you can help

April 7, 2020

Five species of sea turtle rely on Florida’s coastal and nearshore habitats for nesting during the summer months and foraging throughout the year (Figure 1).
- Loggerhead turtles, named for their large, block-shaped heads with strong jaw muscles for crushing benthic invertebrates, are the most common sea turtle species on Florida’s nesting beaches. They nest on beaches throughout much of the state.
- Green turtles are unique among sea turtles in that they are largely vegetarian, and can be spotted foraging in seagrass meadows.
- Leatherbacks, the largest species of sea turtle, are different from other turtles in that they are covered with a somewhat flexible “leathery” shell, rather than a hard shell. Leatherbacks can be seen in Florida’s coastal waters, but nest much less frequently in the state than loggerheads and green turtles.
- Kemp’s ridley turtles are the smallest and most endangered marine turtle. They can be seen foraging in nearshore areas, but rarely nest on Florida’s beaches.
- Lastly, hawksbill turtles are named for their pointed beak. They are mostly tropical but occasionally appear in the southernmost waters of Florida and very rarely nest in the state.

Publication Year 2020
Title Sea turtle conservation: 10 ways you can help
Authors Jessica E. Swindall, Holly K. Ober, Margaret Lamont, Raymond R. Carthy
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title EDIS
Index ID 70209415
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Wetland and Aquatic Research Center