Wednesday, 1 May 2019

Inside the ocean cave that became a chilling ‘turtle graveyard’ – via Herp Digest

By Mark Hodge, The Sun, 4/2/19
Go to for video
Photographer Josh Vergara, 34, from the Philippines, discovered the tomb of dead reptiles on Sipadan Island in Malaysia, while on holiday on March 26.
He said the shelled mammals die after becoming lost and trapped in the cave, meaning they never return to the surface to breathe.
Vergara’s disturbing images show numerous turtle skeletons lying on the floor of the Indian Ocean.
He said: “Turtle Tomb in Sipadan is the only known turtle graveyard in the world.
“The cave system is often visited by turtles as they need to breathe but after getting lost in the cave, they finally find a spot to lay and rest for eternity. It was quite scary as we headed dark caverns and as we got in deeper into the caves, we found more and more turtle remains.”
The chilling graveyard was first spotted by legendary ocean explorer Captain Jacques Yves Cousteau in the 1980s.
He believed that the turtles in the cave had gone there to die peacefully.
However, according to locals in Sipadan Island, the reptiles became disorientated and died of asphyxia.
A skeleton of a dolphin, which is also believed to have suffered the same fate as the turtles, also lies in the cave which reaches up to 600 meters (about 656 yards) in depth.

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