Sea Turtles & Reptiles Archives | Oceana

Olive Ridley Turtle

The olive ridley turtle is the most abundant sea turtle species in the world and is known for its mass nesting aggregations called arribadas (meaning “arrival” in Spanish). Arribadas occur so that there are safety in numbers. More hatchlings survive when they enter the sea with hundreds of others, as opposed to hatchlings born from … Read more

Kemp’s Ridley Turtle

The Kemp’s ridley turtle is the most endangered sea turtle in the world, despite the fact that females of this species nest more often than other animals. Its common name comes from Richard M. Kemp, a Floridian fisherman and naturalist who first submitted the Kemp’s ridley for identification in 1880. Today, the Kemp’s ridley can often … Read more

Marine Iguana

Marine iguanas are the only lizards on Earth that spends time in the ocean. They live only on the Galapagos Islands, and like many Galapagos species, they have adapted to an island lifestyle. Populations across the archipelago have been isolated from each other for so long that each island has its own subspecies. Marine iguanas … Read more

Saltwater Crocodile

Reaching lengths of more than 23 feet (6.5 m) and weights over 2,200 pounds (~1,000 kilos), the saltwater crocodile is the largest reptile on the planet and is a formidable predator throughout its range. Saltwater crocodiles of this size are capable of eating just about any animal that strays too close and are particularly adept at drowning … Read more

Flatback Turtle

The flatback turtle is named for the relative flatness of its shell, one of the characteristics that distinguish it from the other sea turtles around the world. Most sea turtles migrate extremely long distances, travelling across entire ocean basins multiple times throughout their lives. The flatback turtle, however, has a much smaller range, is the … Read more

Banded Sea Krait

The banded sea krait is a sea snake that lives on coral reefs in the eastern Indian and western Pacific oceans. It gets its common name from the dark, vertical bars (bands) that streak an otherwise white body. Unlike some other sea snakes that complete their entire lifecycle in the ocean (e.g., olive sea snake), … Read more

Olive Sea Snake

The olive sea snake is the most common sea snake along the northern coast of Australia and nearby island groups. It is a true snake and gets its common name from the color of its skin. Like all reptiles, olive sea snakes breathe air, but unlike the sea turtles, crocodiles, sea kraits, and other marine … Read more

Leatherback Turtle

Reaching weights of up to 2,200 pounds (1,000 kilos), the leatherback turtle is the largest living turtle on the planet. Unlike all other marine turtles, the leatherback turtle does not have a hard, bony carapace (shell). Instead, as its name implies, it has a tough, rubbery shell that is composed of cartilage-like tissues. Having the … Read more

Hawksbill Turtle

The hawksbill turtle gets its common name from the shape of its curved, pointed beak, which resembles that of a bird of prey. They use this beak to feed on sponges and other invertebrates growing on coral reefs. Hawksbill turtles spend part of their lives in the open ocean, but are more reef-associated than other … Read more

Green Turtle

The green turtle is the largest species in the family of hard-shelled sea turtles and second largest to the leatherback turtle among all sea turtles. Its common name comes not from the color of its skin or shell, which is common among most sea turtle species, but from the greenish color of its fat. The … Read more