The top animal this week is this turtle here. The Leatherback Sea Turtle.
Image By: Ryan Somma
Like a lot of turtles that are around, these guys live in the ocean. Any ocean. You can find leatherback sea turtles all over the planet.
Unlike those other sea turtles you might have seen, leatherback sea turtles don’t have the big hard shells you think of when you hear ‘turtle’. You might have guessed this from the name, but leatherback sea turtles have leathery backs instead of shells.
The leathery back (Image By: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)
A different kind of turtle, with a shell. (Image By: PiccoloNamek)
So… why these turtles instead of some other turtle? It’s because they’re big and I think that’s cool.
Like, look how big they can get.
Image By: Steve Garvie
That’s huge! They’re actually the biggest of all the living turtle species.
As well as that, they’re the fourth heaviest reptiles! Maybe fourth doesn’t seem that high up, but the only other heavy reptiles are all crocodiles so it’s hard to beat, you know? It’s like crocodile, crocodile, crocodile and then this big as turtle out of the left field.
You’d think being so big an heavy, they’d be slow. But people reckon they’re actually THE fastest reptile. Swimming around at over 30km/h.
Even if those adults are pretty big and ugly, the babies are still like this.
Image By: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Southeast Region
This species has both things going for it. Throughout its life it can be small and cute or big and awesome. Being cute at some point is pretty important if you want to be a top animal.
Leatherback sea turtles aren’t very adventurous when it comes to food. They pretty much only like to eat jellyfish.
Because they’re so into jellyfish, they help control jellyfish populations in a natural way. Without these guys, the world might have jellyfish everywhere.
Well, that’s the quick stuff. Hopefully you know a bit more about leatherback turtles now.
What’s your opinion? Is being the biggest turtle a sweet title? Would they be cooler with a shell? Do you know some more facts about them? Write anything and everything in the comment section below.
I only really put out the flashiest facts here, there’s a lot more going on with these turtles. If you’re interested in learning more about them you can check out these links.