© CI/Photo by Roderic B. Mast
Species of Sea Turtles
Sea turtles have swum Earth's oceans for over 110 million years, and now, because of human conduct, they are threatened with extinction.
Sea turtles are fascinating, charismatic, and highly visible marine species, beloved around the world. Among the most highly migratory animals on Earth, sea turtles are bellwethers for the condition of the world's marine environments: they are found in almost all major oceans, frequent diverse habitats, and face the same threats that jeopardize not only other marine species, but entire marine ecosystems.
In fact, six of the seven sea turtle species are currently categorized as Vulnerable, Endangered, or Critically Endangered globally by the International Union of Conservation of Nature's (IUCN) Red List. They include loggerheads, leatherbacks, hawksbills, olive ridleys, Kemp's ridleys and green sea turtles. The flatback, an endemic to Australia, is currently categorized as Data Deficient.
Conservation International's (CI) Marine Flagship Species Program (MFSP) develops and implements innovative tools for flagship species like sea turtles that leverage marine conservation globally. MFSP combines excellent science with creative outreach campaigns to enhance conservation of sea turtle populations and habitats around the world. In partnership with the IUCN Marine Turtle Specialist Group, Duke University, and CI, the MFSP produces the State of the World's Sea Turtles (SWOT), a global network of researchers, writers, photographers, conservationists and others who contribute their efforts to furthering worldwide sea turtle conservation.
Learn more about CI's work with sea turtles:
Read dispatches from CI Sea Turtle Scientist Bryan Wallace, who participated in the most widely reported sea turtle conservation event in Ecuador's history. In less than a week, the team deployed satellite transmitters on hawksbill sea turtles and held workshops for the local community.
See what it's like for Green sea turtles in the ocean. These amazing creatures help maintain healthy seagrass beds with their grazing, which are important for absorbing carbon and regulating the climate of the planet.
Turtle Excluder Devices are a new tool which help fisheries keep turtles out of their nets while they trawl for fish. This benefits both the environment by keeping turtles and other top predators alive and the fishing industry. Learn how CI is working with fishermen to increase the use of these devices.