Jan 19

With George Bradford previously showing his admiration for the small and mighty side of the animal kingdom, will this week’s ARKive staff member favour fluffiness over ferocity?

Lauren Pascoe – ARKive Media Researcher

Favourite species? Leatherback turtle

Why? The leatherback turtle is one of the ocean giants. Perhaps not the prettiest of species, the leatherback turtle’s elegance comes to form in the water. It can perform swimming feats that I’m in awe of – diving up to 1,000 metres (which, by the way, no other reptile could do – the leatherback can maintain an elevated body temperature at cold depths) and travelling thousands of kilometres across the oceans.

Favourite leatherback turtle image on ARKive?

Leatherback turtle image

Male leatherback turtle in open ocean

The leatherback turtle is classified as Critically Endangered (CR) on the IUCN Red List. Its threats include climate change changing the sex of the embryo throughout the incubation period and rising sea levels decreasing the amount of suitable nesting areas. Ocean currents changing is also a major threat to migrating juveniles of this species as well as habitat loss, boat traffic accidents and ingestion of discarded plastic.

See more pictures and videos of the leatherback turtle.