By Angel Woo.
With the temperature of the global climate rising, the number of female baby sea turtles is increasing. The temperature during incubation has the ability to change the gender of sea turtles.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, male sea turtles are produced when the temperature under 81.86 degree Fahrenheit. When the temperature rises to more than 87.8 degrees, the hatched turtles would be 100 percent females, whilst a gender-mix are likely to be produced at mid-80 degrees.
According to the Washington Post, Earth has reached its hottest temperature in the past five years, causing heavy damage to the ecosystem. A significant gender disparity among sea turtles has been found in Florida, Australia and the West African island nation of Cape Verde. The Cape Verde has the most worrying situation – 84 percent of the sea turtles are female. This imbalance could lead to the extinction of species.
The Cape Verdean government is using different tactics to protect the future of sea turtles, for example, the government cooperated with NGOs to clean the beaches and build fences to keep predators away.
Sea turtles are also an important part of the islands tourist appeal. The local tour guides started to educate the visitors about the seriousness of the problem in an effort to raise global awareness. The Washington Post said a local tour guide think tourists only treat the turtles as ‘toys’. That’s why they try to educate people on protecting the reptiles.
The government and local people are trying to ease the problem, scientists have also raised the alarm as well. A group of scientists are working around the clock in Boa Vista, Cape Verde, to try to find different ways to cool down the eggs during incubation. Scientists tried ways like sprinkler systems and separating the eggs in incubating to avoid temperature increase while they are put together.
Sea turtles are only one of the victims of climate change. Other species like lizards and crocodiles are severely affected too. Djamilton Ramos, a Bos Vista city council member said: ‘Humans can do nothing about that’. However, humans have played a vital role in contributing to the climate crisis, and we now have the opportunity to fight it too.