Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Unlocking the secrets of sea turtle migration

Date:
February 29, 2012
Source:
Dick Jones Communications
Summary:
Sea turtles have long and complex lives; they can live into their 70s or 80s and they famously return to their birthplace to nest. But new research suggests this isn’t the only big migration in a sea turtle’s life.

Sea turtles have long and complex lives; they can live into their 70s or 80s and they famously return to their birthplace to nest. But new research suggests this isn't the only big migration in a sea turtle's life.

"We're starting to realize that developmental migrations -- ones that sea turtles make before they mature -- are even more amazing," says Dr. Peter Meylan, professor of natural sciences at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida. "They only do it one time, but it can be much longer than the reproductive migrations they do as adults and may involve tens of thousands of kilometers."

Meylan has been tagging and tracking sea turtles with his wife, Anne Meylan of the Florida Fish & Wildlife Research Institute, and Jennifer Gray and other colleagues from the Bermuda Aquarium. They have compiled the results of long-term capture programs in Caribbean Panama (17 years) and Bermuda (37 years) in a summary paper, "The Ecology and Migrations of Sea Turtles: Tests of the Developmental Habitat Hypothesis," in the Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History.

"Bermuda is a place where young turtles go to grow up," Meylan says. "They arrive there after living out in the ocean. In Bermuda waters they grow from about the size of a dinner plate to the size of a wash tub, and then move on to different, adult habitats."

For example, some green turtles hatched in Costa Rica were spending their "growing up" years thousands of kilometers away in Barbados, North Carolina and Bermuda before heading off to spend their adulthoods near Nicaragua.

Young turtles have already survived hatching from their untended eggs, escaped hungry predators on their rush to the ocean, and have avoided marine predators once there. This research points to developmental migrations as another vulnerable time for sea turtles.

"Tag-return data from this study suggest that this may be another dangerous time for these turtles, and protection as they move into their adult foraging ranges could be a productive objective of policy change for effective marine turtle conservation," says Meylan.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Dick Jones Communications. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Meylan, Peter A. (Peter Andre); Meylan, Anne Barkau.; Gray, Jennifer A. The ecology and migrations of sea turtles. 8, Tests of the developmental habitat hypothesis. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, no. 357, [link]

Cite This Page:

Dick Jones Communications. "Unlocking the secrets of sea turtle migration." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 February 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120229104743.htm>.
Dick Jones Communications. (2012, February 29). Unlocking the secrets of sea turtle migration. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120229104743.htm
Dick Jones Communications. "Unlocking the secrets of sea turtle migration." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120229104743.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Cadaver Dogs Aid Search for More Victims of Suspected Indiana Serial Killer

Cadaver Dogs Aid Search for More Victims of Suspected Indiana Serial Killer

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) — Police in Gary, Indiana are using cadaver dogs to search for more victims after a suspected serial killer confessed to killing at least seven women. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
White Lion Cubs Unveiled to the Public

White Lion Cubs Unveiled to the Public

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Oct. 21, 2014) — Visitors to Belgrade zoo meet a pair of three-week-old lion cubs for the first time. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

'Cadaver Dog' Sniffs out Human Remains

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) — Where's a body buried? Buster's nose can often tell you. He's a cadaver dog, specially trained to find human remains and increasingly being used by law enforcement and accepted in courts. These dogs are helping solve even decades-old mysteries. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

White Lion Cubs Born in Belgrade Zoo

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) — Two white lion cubs, an extremely rare subspecies of the African lion, were recently born at Belgrade Zoo. They are being bottle fed by zoo keepers after they were rejected by their mother after birth. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins