TURTLEY AMAZING: HAWKSBILL TURTLES IN THE BAHAMAS
The Bahamas has breeding populations of 5 of the world’s 7 sea turtle species – Green, Loggerhead, Hawksbill, Leatherback and Kemp’s Ridley turtles (the other two are Olive Ridley – occasionally found in the Bahamas – and Flatback turtles). All are endangered. There’s no getting away from the fact that Man and Man’s activities are now the primary threats. The IUCN ratings below make for sad reading. To see some of the problems, check out THREATS TO SEA TURTLES
HAWKSBILL TURTLE GALLERY
I did ask myself whether including this shot might show a lack of sensitivity for the essential dignity of a fine species, infringing its Testudinal rights. But overall, I feel the public interest is best served by showing it. Anyway, it has plainly discovered something very tasty to get stuck into, so it won’t be unduly bothered. The pair of French Angelfish aren’t going to get a look-in…
The SEA TURTLE CONSERVANCY has produced an outstanding series of posters similar to the LOXAHATCHEE posters about corals, conchs, sea grass, bonefish etc. Here is their Hawksbill one, with illustrations by artist DAWN WITHERINGTON. Click the link to reach her website and see her excellent scientific drawings and a lot more besides. This excellent poster contains pretty much all the details you need to hold your own in any hawksbill-related conversation. You can enlarge it by doing that thing with 2 fingers on your track pad thingy.
I rather like this video from Andros, with the turtle’s gentle tolerance while being approached by a photographer until at last it decides to move slowly off. The music’s a bit annoying though – it doesn’t really fit the scene IMO.
Credits: IUCN, Melinda for the fab photos, Sea Turtle Conservancy