The most abundant of all the marine turtles, these handsome creatures
reach 4- 5 feet in length and weigh up to 400 - 500 pounds. Loggerheads are
reddish brown on the back and orange - yellow underneath. They often acquire
barnacles and seaweed growing on their shells
These turtles once nested throughout the tropics and as far north as
Maryland in the US. Although they are still quite numerous, their nesting
range has diminished as man has invaded coastal areas for housing and
recreation. Several large nesting beaches in Florida and the Carolinas can
still be found, and attempts by local residents to patrol beaches to protect
nesting females and hatchlings are paying off.
Juvenile loggerheads regularly inhabit Long Island Sound and the eastern
bays where they feed mainly on crustaceans and shellfish. Some adults can be
found along the ocean shore and in New York Harbor. As with all sea turtles,
loggerheads are long lived. A mature female loggerhead was documented to
live 33 years in captivity, while estimates of their life expectancy range
up to 60 - 75 years or more.