Loggerhead Sea Turtle

Loggerhead Sea Turtle

Animal's Behavior

Loggerhead sea turtles are most active during the day and spend much of their time swimming or resting on the sea bottom. Males tend to be more active then females but all Loggerheads are known to spend 85 percent of their time submerged. The Loggerheads are highly migratory and can travel up to 3,000 miles. The mating period for the Loggerhead can last up to six weeks. Loggerheads exhibit multiple paternity—a single clutch can have as many as five fathers due to the females' ability to store sperm from multiple males.

Eating Habits

Loggerheads are primarily carnivorous but will also eat vascular plants and algae (making them omnivores) and have the most varied diet of any sea turtle. Young and adult loggerheads feed on bottom dwelling invertebrates.

Range

Loggerheads are found primarily in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans as well as the Mediterranean Sea.

Conservation Efforts

Loggerheads were once hunted for their meat and eggs but the practice is now illegal worldwide. Fishing gear and nets pose the biggest threats to these turtles. Commercial fishers are now required to have Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) when fishing, and some loggerhead habitat areas are completely closed for fishing.

Animal Facts

  • The sex of hatchlings is determined by egg temperature.
  • Loggerhead sea turtles are the most common sea turtle in U.S. waters.

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Quick Facts

Scientific Name

Caretta caretta

Classification

Animalia, Chordata, Reptilia, Anapsida, Testudines, Cheloniidae, Caretta

Size

Considered the largest hard-shelled turtle weighing around 297 pounds with a carapace measuring up to 84 inches

Color

Reddish-brown

Lifespan

47-67 years

Conservation Status

Endangered

Where to See

In the Wild