Fish Fridays….Loggerhead Turtle


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Loggerhead Juvenile

Common Name: Loggerhead

Latin Name Caretta caretta

Location: Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Northwest Florida, Cay Sal Bank (Bahamas), Quintana Roo (Mexico), Sergipe and Northern Bahia (Brazil), Southern Bahia to Rio de Janerio (Brazil).

Distinct Features and Information: The loggerhead is characterized by a large head with blunt jaws. The carapace and flippers are a reddish-brown color; the plastron is yellow. The carapace has five pairs of costal scutes with the first touching the nuchal scute. There are three large inframarginal scutes on each of the bridges between the plastron and carapace. The loggerhead is widely distributed within its range. It may be found hundreds of miles out to sea, as well as in inshore areas such as bays, lagoons, salt marshes, creeks, ship channels, and the mouths of large rivers. Coral reefs, rocky places, and ship wrecks are often used as feeding areas. Loggerheads nest on ocean beaches and occasionally on estuarine shorelines with suitable sand. Nests are typically made between the high tide line and the dune front. The species feeds on mollusks, crustaceans, fish, and other marine animals. Adult hawksbill turtles have been known to grow up to 1 meter (3 ft) in length.

Special Status or Protections: The loggerhead was listed in 1978 as a threatened species and it is considered “vulnerable” by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.

Loggerhead Intermediate

Loggerhead adult

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