'Crazy' Sea Turtle Sex Frenzy Is Happening Off The Coast Of Australia
While the waters off the coast of Queensland are pristine and beautiful, something sordid and wild is happening.
Sea turtles are gathering near Bundaberg near Lady Elliot Island for their once-a-year orgy that will help usher in the next generation of their species.
According to the ABC, this annual sex marathon will last for days and will involve as many different sexual partners as possible.
After all the intense and rather passionate rooting is done, the females will swim off and store the sperm for months until they are ready to lay their eggs. This allows the turtle the chance to produce as many offspring as possible and there will be multiple dads when the hatchlings are born.
This process is so intense for the females that it takes years for them to return.
This epic courtship has its dangers though as the constant copulation can slow the animals down, which make them an ideal target for sharks.
Col Limpus, chief scientific officer with the Queensland Department of Environment and Science’s aquatic threatened species program, told the ABC: “We often see them for courtship getting into shallow areas, into shallow lagoons and reefs.
“I suspect this is to lower the risk of a big predator zipping up from underneath in deep water.”
Researchers believe loggerhead, leatherback and green turtles travel thousands of kilometres to reach these waters, which have been dubbed ‘courtship areas‘. They reportedly use the Earth’s magnetic fields to know where to go to find an orgy session.
Scientists are hoping to be able to study them as their massive sex sessions play out over the coming days.
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Marine biologist Jacinta Shackleton says it’s fascinating to watch because there is still a lot that we don’t know about these species.
“It’s crazy,” she said. “The males are quite chaotic and they have got their eye on the prize. We quite often see a stack of turtles on top of each other and the males will constantly try and rip each other off for their chance to mate.”
Interestingly, none of the sex partners will form a bond during their courtship and they are purely meeting up to procreate.
There also seems to be no age limit for the females to be able to reproduce, with researchers finding some animals aged between 70 to 80 years old who are still pushing out eggs.
It’s sure enough to be quite the spectacle.