According to The Guardian, this makes scientists very worried that the precious sea turtle population will shrink because there are no more males, in addition, the hot weather caused by climate change is likely to continue for a long time.
A young sea turtle at the Sea Turtle Hospital – Photo: REUTERS
The National Oceanic Administration explains: If a turtle’s eggs are incubated below 27 degrees Celsius, it will hatch a male. If incubated above 31 degrees Celsius, it will become a female. Normally, the natural temperature fluctuations between the two extremes will ensure that the species is both male and female. At Florida beaches, however, the past four summers have been the hottest on record.
Warm sands also contribute to the “extermination” of male sea turtles from the eggs, while data shows that intense heat waves caused by the climate crisis are significantly warming the world’s sands, according to CNN.
The agency warned that as the Earth experienced climate change, rising temperatures could also cause turtles to die. The same can happen in other reptiles as well.
“You’re going to see a drastic drop in their numbers because we don’t have that genetic diversity. We don’t have the male-to-female ratio necessary for successful mating,” said Melissa Rosales Rodriguez, caretaker. Sea turtles at the Miami Zoo’s Sea Turtle Hospital explains.
The Sea Turtle Hospital is also dealing with a series of cases of fibropapillomatosis, a deadly disease that manifests as cauliflower-like tumors all over the body, including the eyes and mouth, and even in the internal organs.