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Leatherback Turtles

Turtles | Namibia

Introduction: The leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea)is the only sea turtle that does not have a hard shell and instead bears a mosaic of bony plates beneath its leathery skin. A single species in the genus once facing extinction, research indicates that the leatherback turtle population is on the increase in Southern African waters.

Average dives are around 60m and they last usually for around 10min although in some cases they can reach depths of over 350m and stay under water for some 35min. They can metabolize fat to generate heat and are the only living reptile that is regularly endothermic, hence the ability to stay underwater for long periods.

Distribution: The surface waters of temperate waters off the entire coast of Namibia

Diet: Leatherback turtles feed almost exclusively on jellyfish and are known to travel long distances and enter cold currents temporarily to feed.

Colouring: A black carapace and flippers with scattered white spots. The plastron and lower surfaces are white.

Breeding: Up to 1,000 billiard ball sized eggs are laid in batches of 100 to 120 at a time in a deep, flask-shaped holes, dug on moonlit nights at 9 to 11 day intervals. Eggs hatch after a period of about 70 days and emerge at night to try and avoid predation by sea gulls, fish and ghost crabs. Females nest every 5 years or so.

Size: Total length 1.3 to 1.7m. Females are slightly larger than males.

Weight: Up to 590kg, but some are known to have grown to 800kg.

Amjicaja Guest House

5km from the town center and within walking distance of the lagoon

Courtyard Hotel - Walvis Bay

A business hotel close to the town center

Lagoon Lodge

A bright & cozy lodge overlooking the lagoon and close to all of the cities amenities

Oyster Box Guest House

A small, upmarket, owner managed guest house offering excellent views over the Walvis Bay lagoon

Pelican Bay Hotel

Well situated with views over the lagoon and close to the ever popular Raft Restaurant

Pelican Point Lodge

Adjacent to a light house on a remote peninsula near the town of Walvis Bay. Pelican Point Lodge offers luxurious accommodation in a tranquil, remote & unspoiled environment

Spindrift Guest House

A friendly & relaxing eight roomed guest house

Namibia Tours