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Loggerhead Sea Turtle

South Carolina State Reptile

Loggerhead sea turtle hatchling; photo by USFWS Endangered Species on Flickr (use permitted with attribution).

Loggerhead Sea Turtle

South Carolina designated the loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta) as the official state reptile in 1988 after a request made by a fifth grade class.

Loggerheads make an extended migration between their feeding grounds and rookeries, and South Carolina has some of the most pristine nesting areas for loggerhead sea turtles on the east coast of the United States.

Loggerhead sea turtles are federally listed as threatened with extinction, partially due to destruction of their nesting habitats. They are an ancient and mysterious animal that can reach over 200 pounds.