May 23 – World Turtle Day

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Happy World Turtle Day! Turtles are amazing, beautiful creatures, and today is all about them. This is the worlds biggest turtle (well, not the worlds biggest individual turtle, rather the largest breed), the leatherback sea turtle one of only 7 seawater turtle species: Image

 

(source: http://www.healthywildlife.ca/?p=1502)

This magnificent creature is found in open waters around the world…or they should be. They have few natural enemies once they reach adulthood (growing up to 2 metres in length) but go team human, we are a threat to them, mainly due to our irresponsible care of our rubbish. Even small parts of plastic, once ingested, and cause serious problems for the turtle. They are already on the endangered species list, listed as critically endangered. 

The smallest turtle (actually a tortoise, but hey, close enough) is the speckled padloper, found in Africa. 

Image

(source: http://laetitia-conservation.blogspot.com.au/2012/10/the-chelonians-shield-reptiles.html ) 
This little guy measures 6-10cm at adulthood and while is not as endangered as the leatherback, is listed as near-threatened. Turtles are super old (and probably super wise), with the earliest turtle-like critter thought to have appeared during the late Triassic period…over 220 million years ago. That’s older than your mum’s fashion sense. It would be a real tragedy to see them go (both the turtles, and your mum’s stylin’). 

~ Darcie Rae

And now for an incredibly adorable picture of a turtle with a strawberry:
Image

(source: http://www.tehcute.com/baby-turtle-eats-strawberry.html)

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