Olive Ridley Turtle
Lepidochelys olivacea
    Ecological Descriptors
Habitat Size (cm) Diet Behaviour Sex 
Pel <75 Omnivore I F
Kemp's Ridley Turtle (Lepidochelys kempii) has also been confirmed in the wider Caribbean region and looks somewhat similar (but only 5 lateral scutes), but there are no recent photographically evidenced sightings in Antigua.

Distinguished from other sea turtles by
>5 lateral (and vertebral) scutes however the number is variable and can be asymmetric. 6 scutes common, but up to 9,  plus 12-14 marginal scutes.  Hatchlings and juveniles have serrated posterior marginal scutes, which become smooth with age. Juveniles also have three dorsal keels; the central longitudinal keel gives younger turtles a serrated profile, which remains until sexual maturity is reached Two pairs of prefrontal scales (scales in front of its eyes). Head is small with a blunt  beak. Carapace is almost circular, compared with a more ovoid shape in other local turtles, with scutes not overlapping. Carapace is grey-green to olive and the plastron greenish white to cream.

Sexually dimorphic, with males having longer thicker tails and a longer, less domed and more tapered carapace, plus a concave plastron when mature.

Adults are up to 2 to 2.5 feet in carapace length (60-75 cm) and weigh up to 100 pounds (45 kg).

An omnivorous species, feeding on algae, fish, crustaceans etc.

Life Cycle:
In Antigua there have been no nesting reports.  Sightings are extremely rare, and primarily anecdotal until these 2020 images. Their natural range being far to the South

Olive Ridleys mature at ~13 years, following a growth spurt at ~10 years old. Regional nesting is in Brazil and the NE South American mainland, with rare reports from Trinidad and Tobago. Mass, communal nesting events are known as "arribada".
Females typically lay 1-3 clutches annually per season, averaging 100-110 eggs per clutch. Nesting intervals are approximately 14 days for solitary nesters and about 28 days for mass nesters. The eggs incubate for 50 to 60 days
Olive Ridley Turtle
Olive Ridley Turtle
Olive Ridley Turtle