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Turtles at SEA LIFE

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Meet our Turtles!

Known to be direct descendants of dinosaurs, turtles are one of our biggest captivations, with some having been rescued and rehabilitated in this habitat. Learn everything about turtles, including their feeding habits and inability to draw their heads and legs into their shells, at our displays. Visit and meet our turtles, which include:

  • Ted, the Loggerhead sea turtle, was voted as Orlando's most-loved creature: Oh! - he will be featured on a Frontier Airlines plane
  • Chely, the green sea turtle who is a boat strike rescue and;
  • Terrapin turtles
Photo Aug 18 2023, 9 19 47 AM

Monty the Kemp's Ridley Sea Turtle

Monty has come to live with us from his former home at Disney! He was deemed unreleasable due to a degenerative bone disease that makes it difficult for him to swim long distances and hunt for food. Because of this, Monty will never be able to be released back to the wild and will live in a facility for the rest of his life. That doesn't stop us from still thinking he's perfect!

Did you know the kemp's ridley sea turtle is both the rarest and most endangered species of sea turtle in the world? This is why it is so important to help preserve our oceans and the wildlife that lives in them and why ambassador animals like Monty are so important to help the public learn about these incredible species. 

TED | SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium

Ted the Loggerhead Sea Turtle

As a baby, Ted was one of the first turtles to test the Turtle Excluder Device (get it? T.E.D.!) which was developed to protect sea turtles from getting caught in fishing nets. Researchers tried to release Ted back to the wild several times, but he kept coming back to shore to visit his human friends! Ted has been with us at SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium since 2016 and loves meeting all of the nice humans who come to our attraction!

Ted was voted Orlando's Most-Loved Animal (thanks to all of you!) and he has been featured on a Frontier Airlines plane! When Ted was notified of his big win, he made sure to prepare an acceptance speech to thank all of his supporters. Check out his plane reveal here!

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Chely the Green Sea Turtle

Chely came to us after a boat strike caused a crack in his shell. Because of this crack, Chely has trouble with buoyancy, meaning it's hard for him to swim deep under the water. Luckily, Chely still loves to swim and works with our aquarists to practice diving deep in his tank to strengthen his muscles! His favorite snack is lettuce, so our aquarists put lettuce at the bottom of the tank to encourage him to stay deeper in the water. 

Speaking of diving, did you know green sea turtles can hold their breath for up to five hours? Chely loves to show off just how long he can stay underwater before coming up for air!


Terrapin | SEA LIFE Aquarium


In essence, terrapins are freshwater turtles endemic to brackish habitats. They are relatively small in size. Terrapins regularly swim but also spend time on land basking and burrowing in the mud.

Terrapins have a hard, slightly domed shell similar to that of tortoises and have legs instead of flippers, unlike sea turtles; they seem to be a mix of the turtle and tortoise. They are omnivorous, and their dietary preferences comprise algae, aquatic plants, small fish, insects, and crustaceans.

At SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium, you will find the terrapins lying on the rocks soaking up the heat in their tanks any time you visit. Enjoy the charm of these magnificent animals and learn more about their anatomy and behavior.

Frequently Asked Questions

It might take months or years, depending on the severity of injuries. However, once fully recovered, they are released when the weather is warmer or taken care of for the rest of their natural life.

Because they are an essential part of both marine and coastal ecosystems. They help uphold the health of seagrass beds and coral reefs. Sea turtles are essential in maintaining the balance in the marine food webs and facilitating nutrient cycling from water to land.

The temperature of the nest determines the sex of a sea turtle hatchling. Warmer temperatures result in a majority of females, while cooler temperatures result in a majority of males.