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Most sea turtles now female in northern Great Barrier Reef

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The sex of green sea turtle eggs are determined by the temperature of the sea

It will not be long, perhaps within a few decades to a century, until "there will not be enough males in sea turtle populations, " he warned.

Warmer ocean temperatures are leading to the nearly total feminisation of Green Turtle populations in the northern Great Barrier Reef, with more than 99 per cent of eggs producing females.

All the Australian government's efforts to save the Great Barrier Reef will be for nothing if climate change isn't halted, a report published a year ago in scientific journal Nature found.

But where temperatures were higher, females made up 99.1% of the juvenile population and 99.8% of the population between juveniles and adults.

With rising temperatures, no more males would be around to mate with females, which could ultimately crash the whole population of sea turtles.

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Researchers collected 411 turtles from the southern barrier reef, where waters are cooler, as well as from the warmer northern reef to determine how the population was affected by temperature changes. The species is already considered endangered throughout much of the world.

With average global temperature predicted to increase 4.7 Fahrenheit (2.6 Celsius) by 2100, "many sea turtle populations are in danger of high egg mortality and female-only offspring production", said the report.

Some sea turtle populations have been so skewed by global warming that the young reptiles are nearly entirely female, according to a report in the journal Current Biology.

"This research is so important because it provides a new understanding of what these populations are dealing with", the paper's lead author and NOAA marine biologist, Michael Jensen, said in a statement.

One such method, according to a report in Phys.org, could be setting up tents over the turtle nests, which are in sand, to keep them from getting warmer.

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