Baby Sea Turtle Lokta Card
There are few things more inspiring than seeing tiny sea turtle hatchlings successfully make their way across a sandy moonlit beach and disappear into the endless waves of the vast ocean that will be their home, Small, precious and vulnerable, baby sea turtles face perils even before they emerge from their shells, and only a very few will survive to become mature adults.
Where baby sea turtles go for the first year of their lives is a mystery. It is possible that they live among rafts of floating sargassum seaweed, which would provide some protection and food as they grow in size and gain strength.
Most species of sea turtle return to the beach where they hatched to lay their own eggs, sometimes 15 to 40 years later. It is believed that they have developed a high sensitivity to the Earth’s magnetic field, giving them a finely tuned sense of time and location.
Aside from the variety of predators, other dangers such as rising global temperatures, the loss of habitat, poaching, the artificial light from cities and pollution are threatening the very existence of these magnificent creatures. Sea turtle numbers are declining, but they are now protected as an endangered species, and recovery plans are being implemented. Every time a baby sea turtle makes it to the ocean, there is a spark of hope.
artwork and text by Meghan Kennedy © 2004