A strange phenomenon is taking place amongst sea turtles living in a region of the Great Barrier Reef. According to a new study done on the turtles, almost every turtle born in the northern part of the region is female.
The fact that 99% of all the turtles born in this region are female poses a threat to the entire colony, as it may lack the sufficient number of males required to sustain itself in the coming decades.
Temperature Determines Sex
The colony of approximately 200,000 sea turtles that exists off the east coast of Queensland, Australia is thought to be in danger due to climate change. Unlike many other animals, Green Sea Turtles don’t attain their sex due to sex chromosomes.
According to Camryn Allen, a scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and co-author of the new study, while most mammals have sex chromosomes that will turn an embryo into either a male or female, the sex of Green Sea Turtles is influenced by the temperature of the world outside the embryo.
“They have temperature-dependent sex…