- SEA LIFE, Ocean Tunnel
Turtles are ancient reptiles that have been around for over 200 million years!
Meaning they shared our planet with the earliest Dinosaurs.
There are over 300 species of Turtle in our oceans and rivers today. There are seven species of Sea Turtles – some are critically endangered! They are hunted for their beautiful shells and eggs, and often caught in fishing nets or plastic litter.
Green Sea Turtles
Turtles are reptiles. They have to breathe air and are often seen coming to the surface to fill their lungs. They can hold their breath for many hours at a time if they are not stressed, for example when they go to sleep.
- Noah our Green Sea Turtle is 11 years old
- Noah's shell is in two halves, the top is carapace and the underside is plastrong
- He is also a vegetarian
- Noah was captive-born at a turtle sanctuary in the Cayman Islands and all 8 species of turtle are now endangered
- Noah is a firm favourite with the marine biologists as well as visitors and can be seen being stroked and tickled when there are scuba divers in the ocean tank, this exercise keeps him fit and active
Did you know?
- Turtles take long migrations between their feeding grounds and the beaches where they lay their eggs
- The temperature of the sand in which a Sea Turtle's eggs are buried determines what gender they will be. If it's warmer they'll be girls, cooler and they'll be boys!
Plastic bags are deadly to Sea Turtles which often mistaking them for their favourite food, Jellyfish, and choke on them.
When you visit you'll come face to face with our Red Eared and Yellow Bellied Terrapins!
Terrapins are often bought when they are very small and cute, but they aren't ideal pets: They need lots of varied food, a heat lamp for sunbathing, lots of water for swimming and they can live for over 40 years! In fact all of our Terrapins were donated by people who could no longer care for their pets and we've run out of room.
Boy or Girl?
It's easy to tell! Look for the smallest Terrapins with the longest claws, those are the boys. Males sometimes swim in front of the females, who are much larger than them, and wiggle their long claws in the ladies faces to try and impress them.