In excitement for watching “Finding Dory”, I watched “Finding Nemo” with my 8 month old son. After watching Crush and Squirt (sea turtles) talk with Marlin and Dory, I began to wonder if sea turtles really do swim in the East Australian Current.
I had the privilege to ask Dr. Stephen Dunbar, a professor at Loma Linda University School of Medicine department of earth and biological sciences, about this topic for an article piece called “Finding sea turtles: a green sea turtle’s view“. I found out, yes, there is such a thing as the EAC, although it’s not like a vacuum tunnel as portrayed in the movie. The current is moved by trade winds that occur in the Pacific westerly and easterly plus the Coriolis Effect due to earth’s rotation.
Sadly, in reality, baby sea turtles don’t have a family to be with, instead they find their way back to the ocean by themselves. Baby sea turtles are immediately self-sufficient with no parental care and they don’t go with their siblings.
In the movie, the sea turtles are swimming together in hundreds, however, they do not do this in real life. They are individualistic creatures.
I also found out that turtles like Crush and Squirt are green sea turtles and they eat sea grass sometimes even injured lobsters, so Marlin and Dory were definitely lucky they didn’t eat them after they were injured by the jellies. Surprisingly enough, sea turtles can protect themselves from other preys by turning sideways and making themselves look bigger.
The most important question is…
Do sea turtles live to be 100 or 150 years old?
The answer is unknown because there is no possible way to find out.
So, go to Disneyland’s Turtle Talk with Crush and make sure you ask Crush questions about his sea life! It is just Toooootalllyyyyy Sweeeeeeet!