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The Types Of Sea Turtles You'll Find In Perhentian Islands!

🏝 Perhentian Island is located at the South China Sea east coast of Malaysia, the Perhentian group of islands consist of Perhentian Besar and Perhentian Kecil. It is the island that promises interesting holidays destination with amazing sandy beaches 🏖, jungle interior 🌲 and interesting water sports 🚣🏻‍♀️ are a sure combination to attract the tourist, diver and non-diver. There are many snorkelling and scuba diving spots around it.

One of the most popular snorkelling spots is the Turtle Point at Perhentian Island Besar. At here you have a high chance of meeting the turtles feeding on the seagrass.

There are a few types of sea turtles you'll discover here.

Let's being with the first one,

1️⃣ Green Turtle a.k.a Penyu Agar (Chelonia Mydas)

The green turtle is called by this name because of its greenish soft body, jelly-like substance and pigmented by chlorophyll from the digested vegetation. They are the most abundant species found around the Perhentian Islands and Malaysia. These turtles can range from 1-1.8m total length, and are one of the longest-lived turtle species – up to 80 years! (WOW 🤩)

The adults are herbivorous, mainly feeding on seagrass while the young are omnivorous.

Here's a little video of the green turtle busy feeding on the seagrass. It is so adorable to see how unbothered the green turtle was. 😍


2️⃣ Hawksbill Turtle a.k.a Penyu Karah (Eretmochelys Imbricata)

The hawksbill turtle is another species that commonly found in the Perhentian Islands and Malaysia. They derive its names from the hawk-like beak. Hawksbill turtle has hard attractive dark brown shell or shell with yellow and brown overlapping scales. One of the hawksbill turtles we found, he was covered with algae on top of its beautiful shell. 😅 These turtles can grow up to 1-1.5m as a mature adult.

They can be found around the coral reefs, manly feeding on sea sponges, jellyfish and algae. Hawksbill can live to half a century – 50 years old, making them the marine turtle species with the shortest lifespan.


Besides, the above turtles that you can find in Perhentian Island. There are 2 other species that found in Malaysia too – The Leatherback and Olive ridley.

1️⃣ Leatherback Turtle a.k.a Penyu Belimbing (Dermochelys Coriacea)

Image credits to World Wild Life (WWF)

Image credits to World Wild Life (WWF)

The name Leatherback turtle derives from its smooth leathery carapace or shell. The adult turtle can grow up to the size of 2-3m. They are the largest species of turtle currently in existence. They feed on a diet of mostly jellyfish and are the deepest diving marine turtle, reaching depths of up to 1000m (IKR! What a beast! 🤩).

In Malaysia, Leatherback nests only on beaches in Terengganu. Malaysia used to host the second largest nesting population of leatherbacks but they are now considered locally and functionally extinct 😟 – they exist elsewhere but not in Malaysia due to egg poaching.


2️⃣ Olive Ridley Turtle a.k.a Penyu Lipas (Lepidochelys olivacea)

Image credits to World Wild Life (WWF)

Image credits to World Wild Life (WWF)

Just like the name implies, Olive Ridley turtle has an olive green or grey colour shell. A predominantly carnivorous species, they feed mainly on shrimps, jellyfish, crabs and snails. They are also the smallest of all the turtle found in the world where an adult Olive Ridley is only 60-65cm in length.

They are the most abundant species worldwide, although they are rare in Malaysia. They migrate in large numbers and nest in large aggregations known as 'arribada'.

Being small, these turtles are likely to be caught in fishing gear and marine debris.


Aren't they all cute? 😍 If you are interested in volunteering for the Turtle Volunteer Conservation Project, make sure to check out Fuze Ecoteer and Perhentian Turtle Project. Let's protect the turtles from extinction. 💙


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