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Turtle & Conservation Vocabulary
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Turtle & Conservation Vocabulary

Level 1 Vocabulary

1. Sea turtle Air breathing reptiles that live in the ocean and are able to spend hours under the water. There are 7 species of sea turtles, and all are endangered.

2. Species A grouping of animals or plants that are the same kind.

3. Reptile Cold-blooded, air-breathing animal with a back bone such as turtles, snakes, lizards, and alligators.

4. Hatchling
   A recently hatched baby sea turtle or other animal. See hatchlings on You Tube.

5. Survival
Continuing to live.

6. Habitat The type of area/environment in which a kind of animal normally lives.

7. Clutch A nest or batch of eggs.

 8. Endangered Species A type of animal or plant in danger of becoming extinct, mostly through human actions.

9. Extinct A type of animal or plant that no longer exists such as a dinosaur.

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Level 2 Vocabulary

1. Caruncle Sea turtle hatchling’s temporary egg tooth.

2. Migration To move from one area to another, often for reasons such as feeding. For example, sea turtles often travel thousands of miles across an ocean.

3. Flipper
    A broad flat limb (as of a sea turtle, seal or whale) used for swimming.

4. Threatened
A species at risk of becoming endangered. 

5. Turtle Excluder Devices  (TED’s)  A device used in the fishing industry that helps sea turtles escape from shrimp trawling nets.

6. Carapace Hard outer covering or upper part of turtle shell. Click here to see diagrams:
of carapace, scutes and prefrontal scales.

7. Conservation
    Protection of wildlife and natural resources.

8. Biology The science of living things.

9. Natal Beach The beach where a sea turtle hatched and returns to lay its eggs.

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Level 3 Vocabulary

1. Pelagic  Living in the open ocean.

2. Ecosystem
An ecological community of living things interacting with their environment especially under natural conditions.

3. Scute
   A bony plate or scale, as on the shell of a turtle.

4. Arribada  Spanish word for arrival: A mass-nesting event of the Olive Ridley and Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle.
5. Biodiversity
Many different types of plants and animals: biological variety.

6. Herbivore Animal that feeds on plant-life.

7. By-catch
Marine life that is caught and often killed because of wasteful fishing practices.

8. Omnivorous
Feeding on both
 animal and vegetable substances.

9. Taxonomy
  The study of general principles of scientific classification of animals and plants.

10. Plastron The underbelly part of a turtle or tortoise shell.

11. Prefrontal Scales
  Scales on the head of sea turtles in the area of the eyes.  Click here to see diagrams:
of carapace, scutes and prefrontal scales.

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Level 4: Turtle Species Vocabulary

1. Green Turtle
Largest of all the hard-shelled turtles and is
 herbivorous (eating only plant life) as an adult. Principle cause of their decline is the harvesting of their eggs and meat.  

2. Leatherback Turtle

Largest living turtle and are the largest living reptile in the world. They are the only one with a leathery soft shell, and
 have the longest migration record of 12,774 miles. Leatherbacks face a high risk of extinction See a Leatherback
 laying her eggs on You Tube:

3. Loggerhead Sea Turtle
A sea turtle named for its large head. Adelita, a loggerhead, is featured in a PBS movie: Voyage of the Lonely Turtle. She migrated 9,000 miles from Mexico to Japan. 

4. Hawksbill Sea Turtle
Named for its narrow head and hawk-like beak.  Their survival is threatened due to the loss of coral reefs in the ocean and a demand for their beautiful shell.

5. Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle  Smallest of the sea turtles
 and one of the most seriously endangered

6. Olive Ridley Sea Turtle
  Known for nesting in large
 groups called an arribada. Although the most abundant of sea turtles, they are still categorized as an endangered species

7. Flatback Sea Turtle
  The only sea turtle that nests and breeds in only
 one country, Australia.

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