Monthly Archive October 2023


Threatened Seaturtles

Of the 7 Sea Turtles, the Leatherback Turtle (Dermochelys coreacea) is the largest specie of sea turtle that exists. It can reach 3 meters in length and weigh around 500 kg and it can reach up to 305 years of age. Its color is bluish-black with light and irregular spots; in the case of females, the tail is smaller and they have a pink spot on the top of the head.

Its diet is varied and consists of jellyfish, molluscs, algae, fish and crustaceans, hence its proximity to the coast during feeding and reproduction. Although this specie exists in Portugal, it does not breed on the Portuguese coast.

Leatherback seaturtle
Leatherback seaturtle

Unfortunately, the biggest threat is accidental capture in fishing gear, capturing their eggs and often ending up trapped in ghost nets that are lost at sea. On October 14th, during a Dolphin Watching tour in Lisbon, customers and crew had the opportunity to observe one of these turtles wrapped in a fishing net; despite our efforts, we were unable to approach the animal to remove the net, because fortunately it was feeding and dived as soon as we approached.
This species has a Vulnerable conservation status.

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