Endangered sea turtle appears from the deep to examine diver
Serena is a young diver with a love for all ocean creatures, especially sea turtles. You can imagine her delight when a large Loggerhead sea turtle emerged from the deep and made a beeline for her. It swam directly to her, looked in her face and than quickly flapped off on its way. It's difficult to know what it was about her that made it head right over to her, but something seems to have startled the huge beast because it was quick to take off. These turtles are fast swimmers and a few flaps of their long flippers will create distance fast. This turtle seemed only mildly concerned though, as it seemed to relax again once it was out of reach.
It appears that the Loggerhead may have been curious to see what she was and then suddenly realized that there was another diver behind her. This second diver had a large camera and strobe lights and it is very possible that the unusual equipment was what startled the turtle.
As big as this turtle is, Loggerheads actually grow to 450 pounds quite easily. Some have even reached 1,000 pounds.
This appears to be a juvenile female. A full grown Loggerhead might live for well over 100 years. This turtle could conceivably be cruising over the reef at the turn of the next century.
Loggerheads eat conch and they are able to crush a full grown shell in their massive jaws. Despite their formidable size and incredible power, they are no threat to divers who keep a respectful distance. They are not aggressive animals, although the large males are known to be a little grumpy if they are crowded.
During mating season in May, large males approach divers regularly and it is believed that they are actually able to differentiate between male and female divers. Divers during this time will often see an inquisitive male sneaking up on a group from behind, or even appearing from the deep on a direct course with one of the divers. They are merely curious and easily discouraged.
Full grown Loggerheads have few predators, and fear nothing except man and very large sharks. A close encounter with such an impressive beast is an awe-inspiring experience for a scuba diver.