Many of these tiny hatchlings, which weigh less than 20 grams each, will not even reach the sea. They will fall prey to crabs or birds even before they reach the water. Most of those that do make it into the water will also be eaten by many predators in the sea within the first few days of their lives. In fact, scientists estimate that only one in every thousand hatchlings becomes an adult. It is perhaps to ensure that enough hatchlings survive to keep the species going that sea turtles lay so many eggs.
After many years of swimming in the open ocean, the female hatchlings that have become adults return to the same beach where they were born. They come there to lay their own eggs. How they manage to find the place after so many years in the sea is one of the many mysteries of these fascinating reptiles!
The tiny hatchlings weigh less than 20 grams each. Many of them do not even reach the sea, as they have to fight their predators - crabs, birds may eat them. If they cross this hurdle and reach the sea, most of them will be eaten by predators in the sea, within the first few days of their lives. So many challenges for a turtle! Scientists have estimated that only 1 in 1000 hatchlings become an adult. Even if \(1\) survived from \(1000\) eggs, the species is still surviving - how? That is why the turtles lay hundreds of eggs, maybe!
There is a very interesting fact about female turtles - the female hatchlings that survive all the predators and become adults swim for many years in the open ocean. They return to the same beach where they were born, to lay their own eggs. How do they manage to find the spot by themselves without anyone guiding them, is a mystery of these wonderful reptiles.
Meanings of difficult words:
State Council of Educational Research and Training (2019). Term-1 English Standard-6. Sea Turtles - Shekar Dattatri (pp. 86-92). Published by the Tamil Nadu Textbook and Educational Services Corporation.