Sea Turtles

Close up Picture of a Leatherback Sea Turtle
Nesting Leatherback Sea Turtle


For upwards of 150 million years sea turtles have inhabited the Earth’s oceans. Sea turtles are well-adapted for life in the marine environment. Their large and streamlined bodies, along with their large and powerful fore flippers, allow them to migrate great distances to search for food, to mate, and to nest.

World-wide, only seven species of sea turtles have been identified by biologists. Of these seven, six have been recorded in U.S. waters. Of these six turtles, five can be found in the waters of Gulf Islands National Seashore. These include the green, loggerhead, hawksbill, Kemp’s ridley, and leatherback sea turtles. Their presence within the national seashore helps to keep in balance the marine ecosystem and illustrate the diversity and beauty of marine wildlife. However, they face an uncertain future due primarily to human activity.
Kemps Ridley Sea Turtle on sand.

Learn about Sea Turtle Species

Five species of sea turtles call Gulf Islands National Seashore home

Sea Turtle tracks lead up a sandy beach away from the camera.

Sea Turtle Nesting

Sea Turtles return to Gulf Islands National Seashore annually to lay nests.

A loggerhead sea turtle with a tracker device attached moves along a sand beach toward water.

Sea Turtles Face Many Threats

All five sea turtles found in Gulf Islands National Seashore are designated as either Endangered or Threatened.

Three people take light measurements of the sky at night.

Ways You Can Help Sea Turtles

There are many ways you can help sea turtles at Gulf Islands National Seashore!

Last updated: March 9, 2017

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1801 Gulf Breeze Parkway
Gulf Breeze, FL 32563


(850) 934-2600

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