Most species of sea turtles have a life span of almost 100 years and a life cycle that requires different types of habitat including sandy beaches, sea grass and algal beds, and the high seas. Sea turtles interact with a wide range of human activities at all stages of their life cycle. Five of the seven sea turtle species have a circum-global distribution. Most populations have a distribution that includes shallow coastal, offshore waters and high seas, according to their life stages.

Marine turtles spend more than 99% of their lives at sea, where they are largely inaccessible. Due to a lack of a comprehensive understanding of marine turtle biology, present conservation efforts tend to be focused on nesting females and their

nests, with the majority of protected areas for marine turtles being nesting beaches and their nearby coastal waters. As a relatively small proportion of the life cycle is spent at the breeding site (several months every 2-4 years following an extended maturation period), such areas offer only limited protection to populations as a whole. More recently, electronic tracking studies of marine turtles have begun to highlight a level of fidelity to migratory corridors and foraging sites.


ScienceDaily (Apr. 26, 2007). Turtles Are Loyal In Feeding As Well As In Breeding. Available online: [http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/04/070424204534.htm] (8/1/2008).

Margartoulis, D. et al., 2003. Loggerhead turtles in the Mediterranean sea: present knowledge and conservation perspectives. In Loggerhead sea turtles (ed. A.B. Bolten and B.E.Witherington), pp. 175.198. Washington: Smithsonian Books.

White, M., Haxhiu, I., Kouroutos, V., Gace, A., Vaso, A., Beqiraj, S. Plytas, A., Dedej, Z. 2005. Rapid Assessment Survey of important marine turtle and monk seal habitats in the coastal area of Albania, 2005. Technical Report. Available online: [http://www.medasset.org/PDF/albanian_report/Albanian_report.pdf ] (8/1/2008)