Three species of sea turtles are found in the waters of the coast of Belize, drawn here by ideal feeding and nesting habitat. Green sea turtles inhabit tropical and subtropical waters around the world. They will cover vast expanses of ocean throughout their lifetime, often migrating several hundred and even upwards of one thousand miles between feeding and nesting sites. As the turtles grow, their diet shifts from primarily feeding on invertebrates along with sea grass and algae, to feeding exclusively on the latter. During periods of activity, the must return to the surface every few minutes to breathe, however they can remain submerged for hours at a time while resting.
These giants can reach weights of 300-400 lbs, and while moving about on land is quite a laborious task for females, in the water they are able to glide along with seemingly effortless movements. I struggled to swim alongside this turtle for just enough time to take a couple photographs, and after just a couple casual strokes, this turtle soon left me far behind.
Green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) - Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Belize