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Reptiles of the United States  
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A Guide to the Reptiles &
Amphibians of the United States
U.S. Reptile Guide snakes lizards Turtles turtles salamanders Alligators of the US
Snakes of the U.S.


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Chelonidae of the United States


Sea turtles are characterized by heart shaped, scute covered carapaces, paddlelike limbs with one of two claws, and, with the exception of the leatherback, are the largest living aquatic turtles.They swell in tropical waters, ranging into temperate zones in the summer.

Sea turtles mate in shallow water off the nesting beaches. The females come ashore two or more times a season to lay a hundred or more spherical, leathery shelled eggs in a deep cavity dug with her hind feet. After filling the nest they lumber back to the sea. Hatchlings struggle to escape from the sandy chamber and then must face a horde of predators while they try to make it to the seas. Few reach the haven of water and still fewer survive their first year.

 

There are only five species of Chelonidae in the U.S.

Loggerhead (Caretta caretta)

Found in the warm waters of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. In summer, ranges north to New England (occasionally Newfoundland) and to southern California..

Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas)

Found in the warm waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

Hawksbill Sea Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)

Found in primarily warm waters of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Stragglers reach New England and occasionally southern California.

Atlantic Ridley Sea Turtle (Lepidichelys kempi)

Found in the Gulf of Mexico, ranging north in the summer months to New England and occasionally Nova Scotia.

Olive Ridley Sea Turtle (Lepidichelys olivacea)

Found in the warm waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, occasionally reaches southern California.

 
 

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Recommended Sea Turtles Books at Amazon.com


       

 

 

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