Baby Green Sea Turtle heading to sea

Baby Sea Turtle’s Long Road Ahead

A baby green sea turtle has a long road ahead as it scoots along a beach in the French Frigate Shoals toward its new home, the Pacific Ocean.

Although the distance from cradle to ocean is usually only a few dozen yards, it is treacherous and only a small percentage of sea turtles make it. The journey is filled with predators like birds and crabs who have patiently waited for this tasty snack to appear.

Baby green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) are little bigger than a large coin (2 inches) at birth. Those who make it to the ocean, find food in the first couple of days, and avoid sharks, can ultimately grow to about 5 feet long.

Credit: Mark Sullivan, NOAA affiliate under NMFS permit #10137-07

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