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The Mary River turtle (Elusor macrurus) with a green mohawk of algae.
It's suggested that the algae helps provide camouflage.
Jay Cooney just sent me a copy of the photo and made the suggestion
Apparently the turtles do this as camouflage. A longneck doing this could definitely explain the seaweed-like "hair"[in the "mane"]!
And actually that is a quite good explanation. the seaweed (algae) would also be growing in seasonally, in both saltwater and fresh (with different species) and also could look either greenish or reddish brown, and so it fits all of the broad criteria. Furthermore, the animals could be tearing it off of each other by mouth without doing each other any harm, and the photos do show other patches of growth on the face in the area where "ear fins" and "whiskers" [even "green whiskers"] are rarely and irregularly reported
So I am going to pencil that in a strong possibility and in fact I now rank it as a strong possibility, a higher possibility than Bernard Heuvelmans' and Ivan Sanderson's suggestion that vascularized fibers make up the "Mane." I do not have it as the default yet but it might well be the explanation that stands the Occam's Razor test the best.
Best Wishes, Dale D.