DEEP: Green Turtle

Green Turtle

(Chelonia mydas)

{Green Turtle}

IDENTIFICATION: A large, marine species with front flippers and strongly webbed rear feet. Four costal scutes on each side of the heart-shaped, brown carapace. The first costal on each side does not contact the nuchal scute. Adults are 90-120 cm carapace length. The few animals taken in Long Island Sound were immature, and therefore much smaller (29 cm).

The green turtle is the rarest marine turtle in Long Island Sound. The records closest to Connecticut are from the north shore of Long Island and Charlestown, Rhode Island. Like all species of sea turtles, they migrate to subtropical and tropical waters, after feeding off of the New England coast. In the southern portion of their range they are subject to a host of problems, including over-collection of adults and eggs for food, entanglement in nets, and heavy predation on nesting beaches. The green sea turtle is strictly protected as a "Threatened Species" both under state and federal (ESA) law.

Turtles | Amphibians and Reptiles in Connecticut