Punk-looking turtle who breathes through its genitals added to endangered list

The Mary River turtle native to Queensland Australia and has a distinctive green punk-rock hairstyle two spikes under its chin and the ability to breathe through its genitals is on a new list of endangered reptiles

Even when an animal is designated as an endangered species, that does not mean it is automatically protected.

However, perhaps the Mary River turtle's most unusual feature is its ability to breath through its genitals.

Gill-like organs within its cloaca - an orifice used by reptiles for excretion and mating - enable it to stay underwater for up to three days, but it was unable to hide from the pet collectors who raided its nests during the 1960s and 1970s. It is the last Mohican-style hair species‬‬ and it has one of special ability, it breathe through its genitals.

The Mary River turtle native to Queensland Australia and has a distinctive green punk-rock hairstyle two spikes under its chin and the ability to breathe through its genitals is on a new list of endangered reptiles

The creature is a Mary River turtle - a weird species that can stay underwater for up to three days by breathing through its genitals.

Mary River Turtle has been officially listed among the most endangered.

The Mary River turtle is on the brink of extinctionThis Mary River turtle has a rather fetching punk hairdo made of green algae. This odd-looking creature is part of the world's most vulnerable reptiles list, collated by the Zoological Society of London.

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Academic research was hampered in 1974 when traders refused to reveal the habitat of what were then known as "Penny Turtles" after Australia outlawed the practice of keeping them as pets.

The Mary River Turtle lives in well-oxygenated, flowing sections of streams. Certain species of fish were threatening the juvenile turtles, so the researchers gave up on them to protect the "punk turtles". "As their vulnerability was discovered late, we lost a whole generation due to the pet trade and now their population has become very small".

The Mary River turtle joins a host of other reptiles on the Endangered List, including the world's largest sea turtle, the leatherback and the gharial, a freshwater crocodile once common across much of Asia but now confined to a handful of rivers in northern India and Nepal.

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In an interview with The Guardian the co-ordinator of Edge reptiles, Rikki Gumbs explained how reptiles tend to be overlooked in comparison to birds and mammals when it comes to conservation. "Many EDGE reptiles are the sole survivors of ancient lineages".

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