Earth Platform > Animals > Marine Life > Turtles


turtleThe Turtle is an ancient species, represented in the fossil record as far back as 200 million years ago. There are approximately 270 species in the world occupying all continents except Antarctica. Of these, approximately half are in need of some form of conservation action because they are threatened with extinction. The threats to turtles are habitat destruction, pollution, disease, and overexploitation by an increasingly hungry world. In the face of this onslaught, turtles face a more insidious threat: predicted global increases in temperature caused by greenhouse gases.

Even if turtles survive the possible effects of global climate change, they will still have to contend with other predicted changes. As cold-blooded animals, digestion rate, growth, reproduction and activity are all closely related to temperature. In addition, changing water levels in lakes, rivers and wetlands, could have major impacts on access to suitable nest sites and habitat. Their conservative evolutionary history suggests that they will not be able to adapt to rapid changes. Turtles may have outlived the dinosaurs, but it remains to be seen if turtles can survive in the modern world.


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News about turtles

This Week in Sea Turtles

TWiST 7: Proceedings - Hosts: Michael Coyne, Matthew Godfrey and Manjula Tiwari Don't be confused. We recorded two episodes at once. Episodes 6 and 7 were recorded back to back and I just split the file. In the second half (episode 7) we discuss the recent kerfuffle surrounding the Annual Sea Turtle Symposium proceedings initiated by Peter Pritchard's editorial in MTN 115. And a funny rebuke of Stephen Colbert and the Colbert Report from The Motley Fool.
TWiST 6: Michael Has Been Busy - Hosts: Michael Coyne, Matthew Godfrey and Manjula Tiwari Back to TWiST after a long hiatus. We get you caught up on happenings on SEATURTLE.ORG. Google Docs Digg The Sea Turtle Store Changes to the home page Next exciting thing from ISTOR Stranding database update
TWiST 5: Recovering Ridleys? - Hosts: Michael Coyne, Manjula Tiwari Manjula and Michael take advantage of the annual Board of DIrectors meeting of the International Sea Turtle Society at the National Conservation Training Center near Shepherdstown, West Virginia. This week we talk to Donna Shaver and Thane Wibbels about Kemp's ridley sea turtles and hopeful signs for their recovery.