Leatherback Turtles

(Dermochelys coriacea)

Why is this species endangered?

This species is on the list of endangered animals because of human activity. People take eggs from the nests, so they can be consumed for subsistence. The turtles also die from being stuck in fishing lines, nets, and getting hit by boats. Many leatherbacks die from eating plastic that was thrown in the ocean, thinking it was jellyfish.

Physical and Behavioral Adaptations

To help them survive, these turtles have points instead of teeth on the tomium of their upper lip and backwards spines in its throat. This allows them to help swallow prey, without it escaping. They make eating simpler, and the turtles don't have to chase the prey in the tank. Leatherback turtles have forelimbs that are flattened to adapt swimming. Also, their front flippers power the turtles through water. They let them glide with ease throughout the tank.


Leatherback turtles are great swimmers and can dive over 1,000 meters deep. This behavior lets the turtles swim freely, so we should make the tank deep for them. Female leatherback turtles go ashore so they can lay their eggs. They also cover their eggs in the sand, so we need to incorporate a beach-like area for them to do all of that.

This will be what the new habitat will look like.
The average water temperature is around 44 degrees and higher. Leatherback turtles are found in the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans, as well as the Mediterranean Sea. Two animals that live in the same habitat are killer whales and sea urchin.

Impact of Introduction

Introducing the Leatherback turtle species to their new habitat wouldn't be hard because they can adjust to a new environment easily. As long as their is something the same from their old habitat, the animals will be fine.
Four native plants to the leatherback turtles are seaweed, kelp, coral, and blue and green algae.