Only a few species today are so ancient that they existed when the dinosaurs roamed. Our Greens’ Breeding Bay is home to the Centre’s breeder Green sea turtles, who usually reach sexual maturity at about 16 years old. The beach at the edge of the bay allows female turtles to nest in an environment replicating a beach where they would nest in the wild.
Gazing into the Greens’ Breeding Bay and seeing these magnificent animals gracefully swimming and hearing them breathe is like a glimpse into the past when Columbus’s ships reported multitudes of sea turtles in the surrounding waters when they first sighted the Cayman Islands. For a first-time visitor to the Centre, it is an awe-inspiring experience!
Green sea turtles are the largest of the hard-shelled sea turtles and the second largest of all turtle species. In Green’s Breeding Bay, a few weigh in at more than 500 pounds. During breeding season from May to October, you will be lucky enough to spot body pits on the beach where our females would have laid their eggs the night before!
Here are a couple more facts you should know:
With the exception of a small number of special turtles, namely our Founder animals, which are the oldest breeding turtles, all of the turtles at the Centre today, were hatched and raised at the Centre over the past 50-plus years.
The Cayman Turtle Centre is the only facility of its kind in the world where you have the opportunity to see Green sea turtles at every stage of their life cycle, from egg to full-grown adult, all in one place. This offers a unique experience for casual visitors and researchers alike.