Sea turtles are endearing creatures that have intrigued us since childhood. They're super slow, some live longer than most of us ever will, and they're in my favorite scene of Finding Nemo. But what many of us don't know is that sea turtles have some impressive abilities that are borderline superpowers. Here's our roundup of five facts most people don't know about sea turtles:
Wait a minute! Didn't I just say that turtles are super slow? They are — but only on land. Actually, sea turtles are capable of swimming at a whopping 22 miles an hour. That's faster than most of us can run!
The leatherback sea turtle can grow up to just over seven feet long and weigh up to 1,500 pounds. That's as much mass as four gorillas! They get to this weight with a diet consisting mostly of jellyfish.
Ninety percent of our plant and animal life disappeared in a flash when a giant meteor collided with earth millions of years ago. Thanks to their underwater habitat and slow metabolism, sea turtles were one of the lucky ones. A slow metabolism helps them survive longer periods with less food.
Sea turtles are equipped with the natural type of bullet-proof vest — the shell. As an additional line of defense against predators, their fins are streamlined for fast swimming underwater. These fins, which give them speed underwater, are not very efficient on land, making them slow-moving creatures onshore. Unlike land turtles, sea turtles can't retract their heads into their shells. This too helps them swim quickly.
Sea turtles have survived the meteor that killed almost everything in its path. They invariably survive close encounters with sharks. The one thing they are having serious trouble with? Humans. For decades, humans have killed sea turtles for their eggs, shells, and meat. They continue to use fishing traps which accidentally get them tangled and killed. And pollution hasn't helped either. Sea turtle populations are declining around the world, and they will become extinct if we don't change our habits.
Our mission at Turtle Bracelets is to raise awareness and to donate 10% of net proceeds to causes that educate the public and conserve the sea turtles.