#video | What does the world's largest turtle look like?

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Probably only a few people are surprised that turtles belong to a very old species. According to paleontologists, they were created more than 200 million years ago, ie they lived during the time of the dinosaurs. Today scientists know 328 species of these reptiles, but leathery turtles have a special place on this list. In contrast to all the others, they are really gigantic and next to them seem to be small and defenseless creatures. Recently, one of the largest leatherback turtles was photographed on the territory of the Florida island of Hutchinson.

Leatherback turtles really have huge body sizes

Since the aforementioned island is a popular holiday destination for many people, it is not surprising that tourists discovered the giant tortoise. Luckily none of the eyewitnesses approached them – they just looked at her quietly and turned her on video. A giant species of leatherback turtle crawled slowly over land to water and soon disappeared into the waves. About an unusual meeting of humans and turtles the publication Truly Mind reported.

How do turtles lay eggs?

Apparently, a woman saw tourists burying their eggs near the shore. Such a spectacle is very rare to see, as representatives of this turtle species only crawl on land at night and can be seen during the day only during egg laying every 1-3 years. In the breeding season the females can produce up to 7 eggs with 100 eggs. The laying breaks are about 10 days. The depth of the dug nests is at least one meter – the eggs are carefully buried to protect them from predators.

By the way, in future, due to global warming, only female animals will hatch from turtle eggs

Turtles hatch out of hundreds of eggs, which almost immediately come out of the nest and crawl into the water. These tiny creatures then become real giants with a body length of up to 2.6 meters and practically the same fin scale. The body weight corresponds to a considerable 916 kilograms. Whether you like it or not, these turtles are still bigger than even humans. It is simply impossible to raise such giants without special machines.

Leatherback turtle underwater

In addition to their gigantic size, these turtles differ in their body structure from their relatives. First, their shell is in no way connected to the skeleton and consists of small bone plates. Secondly, the surface of the shell is covered with a thick layer of skin, which protects the turtles no worse than chitin, dandruff and other protective formations found in animals. Incidentally, these are normal turtles that live in the tropics and feed on fish, crabs and jellyfish.

That's interesting: turtles started to eat plastic. What can you do with it?

Why do poachers hunt turtles?

Leatherback turtles are currently under special protection as their nests are a welcome prey to many poachers. The fact is, their eggs are considered very high on the black market as aphrodisiacs – substances that promote people's sexual desire.

An interesting fact: The word aphrodisiacs was named after the ancient Greek goddess of love and beauty Aphrodite.

The hunt for leatherback turtles is such a serious problem that poachers killed a young animal shelter in 2013 to achieve what they wanted. The Costa Rican activist was named Jairo Mora Sandoval – he was killed while patrolling the beach in the city of San Jose.