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Green turtle
Chelonia - Sonnini and Latreide, 1802

Pronunciation: kel-OH-nee-ah
Etymology: 'turtle'.

Taxonomic notes:

Statistics: Reproductive modes:
Oviparous - 1 out of 1 Australian species

Size range:
Smallest Australian species: green turtle (Chelonia mydas) at 150 cm
 Longest Australian species: green turtle (Chelonia mydas) at up to 150 cm
Number of Australian species: 1

green turtle (Chelonia mydas)
Nesting turtle - Exmouth region, Western Australia
Photo © Stewart Macdonald
green turtle (Chelonia mydas) distribution range map Chelonia mydas
Green turtle
Year described
(Linnaeus 1758)
Olive-green above, usually variegated with brown, reddish-brown and black. Whitish or cream below. Shields on sides of face with distinctive pale-edged sutures. Hatchlings shiny black above, white below. Head moderate. Four or more postoculars. Shell subcircular to heart-shaped, the lateral edges not upturned. Four costal shields on each side. Upper eyelid with a series of enlarged, transverse scales. Distal half of forelimb almost entirely covered by enlarged scales, without distinct areas of smaller irregular scales between the phalanges. One pair of large prefrontal scales on head. Scutes of carapace not overlapping.

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