Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Sea turtles on verge of extinction, thank you global warming

Twenty years ago, the population of leatherback sea turtles was 90,000. Now, there are an estimated two to three thousand. (NY Times) The culprit? You, me and everyone else that contributes to global warming.

Rising sea levels have shrunk the available beach for the turtles to lay their eggs (one reason that's bad news is that it's easier for predators to find them). Rising temperatures are throwing the gender balance off, too. How? A turtles gender is determined by the temperature during egg development. At 30 degrees Celsius, you're more likely to have females. At 32 degrees, all eggs yield females. Above 34 degrees? "You get boiled eggs," said one expert.

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.