Hawksbill Turtle


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Hawksbill Turtle

 

(Eretmochelys imbricata), a reptile of the family Chelonidae. The length of the shell is up to 85 cm. The dorsal shield is dark brown or chestnut colored with a yellow or rose design of spots and rays; the ventral shield is yellow.

The hawksbill turtle is found in all tropical and subtropical seas. It feeds on mollusks and fish, and partly on water plants. It leaves the water only during reproduction. Each year the female hawksbill turtles deposit more than 100 eggs on low sandy banks. The development lasts approximately 60 days. The horny shields which cover the hawksbill turtle’s shell (known as tortoiseshell) are highly valued and have long been an object of commerce. Hawksbill turtles are caught on the shore during reproduction, often before they can deposit their eggs. As a result of increased annihilation, the number of hawksbill turtles has decreased sharply. The flesh is not used as food.

References in periodicals archive ?
WASHINGTON -- Critically endangered hawksbill turtles are no longer being sold as tourist souvenirs in the Dominican Republic after a powerful government campaign cracked down on shops illegally trading such items.
It provides crucial nurseries and spawning grounds for a wide variety of fish species, and serves as a foraging habitat for endangered hawksbill turtles and green turtles.
Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC), the master developer of Sdiyat island, has announced the successful hatching of the first nest this year of critically endangered Hawksbill turtles.
This four-week light-hearted race, part of EWS-WWF's Marine Turtle Conservation Project, serves as an interactive platform for the UAE community and beyond to learn about the plight of Hawksbill turtles in the region.
Other common taxa included juvenile hawksbill turtles, spiny lobster, yellow stingrays, squirrelfish, surgeonfish, trunkfish, barracudas, and black durgons (see Table 1 for scientific names).
In Sharjah, meanwhile, Sir Bu Na'air Island houses more than 300 hawksbill turtle nests every year, the largest nesting population in the UAE.
They are Green Turtle, Loggerhead Turtle, Olive Ridley Turtle, Hawksbill Turtle and Leatherback Turtle.
Of the seven species of marine turtles in the world, two can be found in Abu Dhabi s waters: the critically endangered Hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata) and the endangered Green turtle (Chelonia mydas).
The hawksbill turtle is listed as a critically endangered species as its population declined by more than 80 per cent worldwide over the last three generations due to habitat destruction and poaching.
The nests are now under the observation of Tourism Development & Investment Company's (TDIC) environmental affairs team, as part of the company's Hawksbill Turtle Conservation Programme, the only one of its kind in the Arabian Gulf.
Harvesting of eggs at beaches, loss and degradation of habitats as well as accidental capture all contribute to the decline in the Hawksbill turtle population.