Australia's green turtle may become extinct

11 January, 2018, 09:36 | Author: Becky Perry
  • Climate change great barrier reef Turtles all women 912018

Volunteers and with Fish and Wildlife wardens released hundreds of turtles back into the sea that had washed ashore recently, "cold stunned", far too chilled to swim, because of the massive fall in sea temperatures in some bays around the state, according to local reports. If the temperature gets above a certain point, the baby sea turtle will be female.

Overall, 86.8 percent of adult-sized turtles in the entire area were female.

A new study on Tuesday claimed that the green sea turtles in Australia's Great Barrier Reef might become extinct due to warmer ocean temperatures.

Less than one per cent of the juvenile green sea turtles in the northern Great Barrier Reef are now male, which is a huge concern for conservationists.

Scientists are concerned populations of these animals - as well as alligators and crocodiles - could turn nearly completely female.

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Researchers from the US and Australian governments found out that sea turtles mating in the northern Great Barrier Reef were producing about 99 percent female offspring.

Climate change is being blamed since the sex of the sea turtle is determined by the heat of the sand where they lay their eggs.

They worked in an area where two different populations of green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) forage - one from a warmer area and the other from a cooler area.

Conducted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in the U.S. along with Australian scientists from the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection, the study found that male green turtles were rapidly declining for around two decades, reports Xinhua news agency.

"This research is so important because it provides a new understanding of what these populations are dealing with", Michael Jensen, the study's lead author and a marine biologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said in a statement.

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