Green Sea Turtle commonly found in South Florida on the east coast between Volusia and Broward counties. The nesting and hatching of green sea turtle season in South Florida from May through November. The discussion of environmental threats and management activities, however, concern only to South Florida.
- Serious threats to the green sea turtle on South Florida nesting beaches include
- Artificial lighting
- Beach Nourishment
- Beach Armoring
- Increased Human Presence
- Exotic Beach
- Dune vegetation.
The green sea turtle is the largest of the sea turtles among all sea turtle adults commonly reach 1 m in carapace length and 150 kg in mass. The average size of female green turtles nesting in Florida is about 1.5 m standard straight carapace length and 136.1 kg body mass. Hatchling weight of green turtles is approximately 25 g, and the length of carapace is about 50 mm long. The color of the dorsal surface is black, and the ventral surface is white. The plastron of Atlantic green turtles remains a yellowish-white throughout life remains constant, but the carapace varies in color from solid black to a variety of shades of grey, green, brown, and black in a starburst or irregular patterns.
Characters that distinguish the green turtle from other turtle species are
- Smooth Carapace with four pairs of lateral (or costal) scutes
- Single Pair of Elongated prefrontal scales between the eyes
- Crawls of nesting green turtles are deeply cut, with symmetrical diagonal marks made by the front flippers
Habitat Of Green Sea Turtle
Green turtles occupy three types of habitat are
- High-Energy oceanic beaches
- Convergence zones in the pelagic habitat
- Benthic feeding grounds in relatively shallow, protected waters.
Females search for high energy beaches on the island and then deposit egg clutches there, where a deep nest cavity can be dug above the high water line. Hatchlings leave the beach and move into convergence zones in the open ocean where they spend or we can say they settled there for the length of time. When turtles grow and reach a carapace length of approximately 20 to 25 cm, they leave the pelagic habitat and enter under the water feeding grounds.
- These foraging habitats are common land that is covered with
- Seagrasses or Algae
- For small green turtles found over
- Coral Reefs
- Worm Reefs
- Rocky Bottoms.
Some feeding grounds are of a certain size group of green turtles the turtles as far as to move among these foraging areas called as developmental feeding grounds as they grow. Other feeding areas are Miskito Cays, Nicaragua, which helps them to complete the size range of green turtles from 20 cm to breeding adults. Coral reefs or rocky formation visible near feeding pastures are often used as resting areas, both at night and during the day also.
Behavior Of Green Sea Turtle
The behavior of green sea turtle has several extremely good views of the biological characteristics of green turtles that have been published in recent few years like in Hirth 1980a, Groombridge 1982, and many more.
Reproduction and Demography
Female of green turtles emerge on nesting beaches at night to deposit eggs it took a time of approx of an average of two hours. From one to seven clutches are deposited within a breeding season at 12 to 14-day an intervening time. The average number of clutches is usually given as two to three. The mean size of the clutch is usually 110 to 115 eggs, but this average may be different among populations. The average clutch size for Florida was 136 eggs in 130 clutches as per the reports.
Growth rates of green turtles have been measured that live on or in the bottom-feeding grounds. They grow slowly. It is seen in the southern Bahamas that green turtles grew from 30 to 75 cm in 17 years, and the growth rate decreased with increasing carapace length as per the expert’s noticed. As per the growth rate studies of wild green turtles estimates of age at sexual maturity range from 20 to 50 years.
It’s hard to know what signs are employed in pelagic movements, in movements among foraging grounds, or in migrations between foraging grounds and nesting beaches. Because green turtles nest on high energy beaches and feed in quiet, low-energy marine pastures, these areas tend to be located some distance apart. Green turtles which have nested on Ascension Island forage along the coast of Brazil, some 1,000 km away. Some of the scientist have done genetic analysis using restriction fragment analysis and direct sequencing of mitochondrial DNA that shown that green turtles return to nest on their natal beaches.
Pelagic-stage green turtles can eat plants and dish or some others thinks, but for nowadays we can say that we did not have any data on the diet of this age class. It is known that once green turtles shift to the bottom of a body of water feeding grounds they are herbivores. They can eat both seagrasses and algae. The location in Florida of the foraging grounds of green turtles that nest unknown.
Post-nesting females have recently been tracked to know the activities and where it stays and know the things related to them with the help of satellite telemetry from the beaches of the Archie Carr NWR to the shallow, benthic habitats of the Florida Keys.
Relationship To Other Species
A green sea turtle can also share his nesting beaches with the threatened loggerhead sea turtle also called Caretta caretta in every place around the world where it nests, and with the endangered leatherback sea turtle also called Dermochelys coriacea, most commonly they share nesting in Martin and Palm Beach counties. Beach nourishment projects majorly affect these species as well as the turtles. The range of the beach mouse expand from South Florida is estimated to include Indian River County south to Broward County.
Hatchlings entering the surf zone and water surface stage hatchlings maybe hunt for food upon by a wide variety of fish species and, to a lesser extent, marine birds can also destroy it. Tiger sharks appear to be the principal which mostly depends on others of subadult and adult turtles. While sea creature turtles may exhibit shark-inflicted injuries, caution must be exercised in regarded as a cause of death, as these wounds can be caused to suffer from postmortem.
Environmental Threats To Green Sea Turtle
In this world, there are numbers of threats and many adverse conditions were threats to sea turtles in the marine environment that’s including
- Oil and Gas an Exploration
- Purse Seine
- Hook and Line
- Gill Net
- Pound Net
- Trap Fisheries
- Underwater Explosions
- Offshore Artificial Lighting
- Power Plant, etc.
Erosion of nesting beaches can result in partial or total loss of appropriate for particularly nesting habitat. Erosion rates are influenced by the constant change in coastal processes that are including sea-level rise. The human process of being interfered with these natural processes through coastal development and related activities has resulted in accelerated erosion rates and interruption of natural shoreline migration.
Artificial beachfront lighting from buildings, streetlights, dune crossovers, vehicles, and other types of beachfront lights have been recorded in the disorientation of loss of bearings and misorientation or incorrect orientation of hatchling turtles. The results of disorientation or misorientation are often causing deaths. Many lighting authoritative order requirements do not become effective until 11 p.m., whereas over 30 percent of hatchling emergence occurs coming before to this time. As hatchlings head toward lights or meander along the beach, their exposure to predators and likelihood of removal of moisture is greatly increased.
Improperly oriented hatchlings can become entrapped in vegetation or debris, and many hatchlings are being struck by the vehicles and found dead on nearby roadways and in parking. Hatchlings that successfully find the water maybe lack proper orientation after entering the surf zone or while in nearshore waters.
Beach cleaning refers to the abolishing something unwanted of both abiotic and biotic debris from developed beaches. Mechanical raking can result in heavy machinery over and over again traversing nests and potentially compacting sand above nests. Resulting tire track along the beach may obstruct or trap beginning hatchlings. Mechanically pulled draw together and hand rakes can make a whole in the surface and disturb the sealed nest or may actually uncover pre-emergent hatchlings near the surface of the nest.
In some areas, collected scattered pieces of rubbish are buried directly on the beach, and this can lead to action of excavating and destruction of incubating egg clutches. Disposal of debris near the ridge of sand line or on the high beach can cover them and keep them to warm egg clutches and subsequently obstruct and entrap emergent hatchlings and may alter natural nest temperatures.
Increased Human Presence
Residential and tourist use of developed nesting beaches can result in negative impacts on nesting turtles due to some interference and causing sometimes noise pollution, bring them to the hatching of egg clutches. The most serious threat caused by the disturbance of nesting females due to the presence on the beach. At Nighttime the human activity can cause nesting females to carry out nesting attempts at all stages of the emphasizing behavior process. Murphy (1985) reported that disturbance.
Exotic Dune and Beach Vegetation
Non-native vegetation has occupied many coastal areas and often surpass native species such as sea oats, railroad vine, sea grape, dune panic grass, and pennywort. The inrush of less decline vegetation can lead to increased erosion and degradation of suitable nesting habitat. Originating in vegetation may also form impossible to pass through roots that prevent proper nest cavity excavation, invade and desiccate eggs, or trap hatchlings.
As per the studies in Florida considered that nests laid in shaded areas are subjected to lower the process of incubating egg temperatures, which may alter the natural hatchling sex ratio. Fallen Australian pines limit access to suitable nest sites and can entrap nesting females. However, highly developed beaches, nesting may be present in high areas where dense stands of Australian pines create a barrier to extreme force beachfront and beach vicinity lighting.