Billy is a big adult male leatherback, who likes hanging out with his marlin and swordfish buddies when he’s not racing other leatherbacks across the Atlantic Ocean. Billy’s female cousin by the same name (Billie) was the winner of the 2007 Great Turtle Race over in the Pacific Ocean, narrowly edging out Stephanie Colburtle.
Olympic champion Jason Lezak, a career relay swimmer, is trying to instill his exceptional discipline and energy in Billy for this Race.
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Offield Center for Billfish Studies
159.6 cm (5 ft 3 in)
113.3 cm (3 ft 9 in)
440 kg (970 lbs)
Tune in to see if Jason’s inspiration can help Billy speed away to victory for the family again this year.
Where is he now?
We actually got a faint hit from Billy’s transmitter about a month after it went silent, but after the Race had ended. Although the location was of limited accuracy, it appeared that Billy had crossed the finish line after all, and was hanging out off of Galera Point, Trinidad.
This is typical behavior for an adult male in a breeding season (i.e. hanging out in waters off nesting beaches), and Billy’s choice of location was strategic, as Trinidad hosts one of the largest leatherback nesting colonies in the world, with thousands of females coming ashore to lay eggs each year.