Endangered Animals of Hawaii

Hawksbill Sea Turtle

Photo from Arkive.



  • Also named the Eretmochelys Imbricata. (NOAA)
  • Weight:100-150 lbs. (NOAA)
  • Length: 25-35 inches (NOAA)
  • Lifespan: Unknown (NOAA)

  • Top Shell- Called the carapace is dark to golden brown, with streaks of orange, red, and/or black. Serrated ends, and overlapping scutes. (NOAA)
  • Bottom Shell- Called the plastron is clear yellow. (NOAA)
  • Flippers usually have two claws. (NOAA)
  • Two pairs of prefrontal scales on the top of their head. (NOAA)

Photo from Arkive.

Food Chain

  • Hawk like beak helps to find food in the holes and crevices of coral reefs. (NOAA)
  • Eat sponges and other invertebrates, algae, anemones, squid, shrimp, and sometimes jellyfish. (NOAA)
  • Omnivore. (NOAA)
  • A grown turtle is prey to sharks and man. (NOAA)
  • Eggs and recent hatchlings are prey to ghost crabs, racoons, skunks, opossums, mongooses, and dogs.(NOAA)
  • Hatchlings are prey to fish and sea birds. (NOAA)
Photo from Arkive.


  • Found in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. (NOAA)
  • Grow larger in the Atlantic. (NOAA)
  • Also found in Hawaii/ Caribbean areas. (NOAA)
  • Coral reefs provide good ledges and caves for the turtle to take shelter. (NOAA)
  • Caves in coastal reefs, rocky areas, estuaries, and lagoon. (ST911)
  • Often take up the same resting spot night after night.
Photo from Arkive.


  • Serrated shell. (NOAA)
  • Claws on fins. (NOAA)
  • Mostly stays underwater. (NOAA)
  • Major threats when it is a egg or a new born, so instinct to go to the ocean where it is safer. (NOAA)
  • Hawk like beak to snag food from tiny crevices. (NOAA)
  • Strong beak. (NOAA)
  • Females go to their nesting spot to give birth to their eggs. (NOAA)
Photo from Arkive.

Endangerment & Critical Information

  • Habitat loss of coral reef communities becauseof humans polluting the water, toxic spills, vessel groundings. Global climate change causing higher incidences of coral diseases. (NOAA)
  • Harvest of their eggs and meat. Directed harvest of nesting females and eggs on the beach. As well as turtles in the water. (NOAA)
  • Commercial exploitation (historically, but still permitted in some parts of the world. Primary cause, demand for shell, leather, oils, perfume and cosmetics. Shell carved into jewelry and other trinkets. (NOAA)
  • Recreational and commercial use of beaches. Human presence is a threat on nesting beaches - beach camping and fires, litter and other refuse, all around harassment to turtles. Loss of nesting habitats due to human activities. (NOAA)
  • Accidental capture in fishing gear and vessel strikes. (NOAA)
Photo from Arkive.

Conservation Efforts

The hawksbill sea turtle is protected by many treaties and agreements, set in by the government. But that isn't enough. We need everyone's help, there are so many people already involved trying to make a difference. But we need you too. Join the crowd and help out.

What you can do:
  • Volunteer and internship programs.
  • Donate.
  • Help raise awareness.
  • "Adopt a sea turtle."
  • Join a conservative group.


Photo from Arkive.