Monday, July 30, 2007

Hawksbill turtle fact sheet

Eretmochelys imbricata | Hawksbill turtle

The hawksbill turtle is named for its strong hooked beak. Its shell is very different to other sea turtle species, as it is made up of fine scales, thick and intertwined. Hawksbill turtles spend part of their life in the open sea, but they are most often found in shallow lagoons and coral reefs. In these shallow areas their favourite prey, sea sponges, are encountered. They also eat other invertebrates such as jellyfish and comb jellies. They are great swimmers, reaching speeds of up to 24 km/h, and can dive more than 70 m deep for durations exceeding 80 minutes. Some of these turtles accomplish very large lone migrations which may amount to several thousands of kilometers. Hawksbill turtles are the most tropical of the sea turtles. They are distributed throughout tropical waters of the Indian, Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. We know of two principal subpopulations; the Atlantic (E. imbricata imbricata) and Indo-Pacific  (E. imbricata bissa) subpopulations.

• Total: Up to 114 cm
• Carapace: 71 - 114 cm 

Weight: Up to 85 kg 

Global population: Unknown

Status: Critically Endangered 

DietThe hawksbill turtle is hervivorous and feeds on seaweed and macroalgae (CaulerpaTurbinariaSpyridiaCodium and Ulva)

Longevity80 years

Breeding age20 - 40 years

Number of eggsc. 140

Incubation: about 2 months

In other languages
Portuguese: Tartaruga-de-escamas
Spanish: Tortuga carey
French: Tortue imbriquée
Italian: Tartaruga embricata
German: Echte Karettschildkröte
Dutch: Karetschildpad
Swedish: Karettsköldpadda
Norwegian: -
Danish: -
Finnish: Karettilkilpikonna
Polish: Żółw szylkretowy

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