Leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea)

Nesting sites: Tropical coastlines across the world

Leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea)Natural habitat: Seas in topical, sub-tropical, and temperate regions

Weight: 500 kg

 

Carapace

Length: 140-170 cm

Shape: Oval shaped with leathery skin, with seven longitudinal ridges on the carapace. The upper jaw is triangular and forked

Colour: The carapace is dark brown with white spots, or black

Limbs: Front limbs are long and oar-shaped without nails

Plastron: Faint in colour and smaller in shape than the carapace, with five longitudinal ridges

Food: Physalia and other invertebrate animals

Breeding season: May-August

Egg deposition time: Nocturnal

Frequency in a breeding season: 4-6 times

Duration between deposition of consecutive eggs: 9-10 days

Duration between two breeding seasons: 2-3 years

Number of eggs: 80-100

Incubation period: 61-66 days

Current status: The species is endangered due to the consumption of its eggs, destruction of breeding habitats, slaughter of adult turtles for oil extraction, and for other reasons. Protected under Schedule 1 of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972

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