13 thoughts on “More Florida sea turtles’ nests

  1. Oil spill deadly time for turtles

    February 1, 2011, 1:58am

    WEST PALM BEACH, Florida (AP) – More sea turtles were killed or injured in the Gulf of Mexico in the months following the BP oil spill than in any similar period during the past two decades, a report released Wednesday found.

    While the report suggested many of the 600 turtles were hurt by the spill, it’s still not clear exactly how many died from ingesting the crude or how many drowned in fishing nets in the scramble to catch shrimp and fish before the oil ruined them. The sea turtles could have also been killed by cold weather or other factors unrelated to the spill.

    The report said the rate of dead, disabled and diseased sea turtles discovered in the months following the massive April 20 spill was four to six times above average. The analysis, by the National Wildlife Federation, the Sea Turtle Conservancy and the Florida Wildlife Federation, was conservative and only took into account turtles found on shore, not those rescued or recovered at sea.

    Researchers with the federal government said it would take years to determine the full impact of the spill on sea turtles. Necropsies have been done on more than half of 600 turtle carcasses, and while some may have died from oil, most of the turtles drowned in fishing gear, said Monica Allen, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association spokeswoman.

    Unseasonably cold temperatures last winter were also detrimental to sea turtles, most of which are considered endangered, said Gary Appelson, policy coordinator for the Sea Turtle Conservancy. “Sea turtles have had a tough year,” Appelson said.

    Doug Inkley, senior scientist at the National Wildlife Federation and a co-author of the report, said while some of the turtles’ deaths could not be linked to the spill, the much higher-than-usual number indicated the disaster was at least partially responsible.

    He said turtles suffered more than other species because their populations are already low and face long odds of reaching adulthood. It takes turtles 10 to 30 years to reach maturity, meaning it could take decades to restore the damage to their population, Inkley said. “Of all the species affected by the oil spill, those for which I have the greatest concern are the sea turtles,” he said.

    Wildlife officials undertook Herculean efforts to try to save turtles during the oil spill. All told, hundreds of loggerhead nests containing nearly 15,000 hatchlings were successfully transported and later released along the Atlantic.

    Besides urging lawmakers to uphold funding for beach conservation, the report’s authors urged the elimination of subsidies for construction projects along coastlines and the protection of less developed areas of the shore.

    More than 90 percent of North American sea turtle nesting happens on Florida’s beaches. Five of the planet’s seven species of sea turtles are found in the state. Four of those – green, hawksbill, leatherback and Kemp’s ridley – are considered endangered, or at risk of becoming extinct. The fourth, loggerheads, is listed as threatened, or likely to become endangered.

  2. Endangered Sea Turtle in recovery

    Updated: Feb 06, 2011 8:47 AM

    (SAN DIEGO) CA-

    Sea World employees in San Diego are doing all they can to save a sea turtle that was shot in the neck.

    Workers believe someone shot at the 250-pound-turtle with a shotgun when it poked its head out of the water.

    When workers found it… They say the turtle was lethargic and breathing slowly… As well as dehydrated.

    A Sea World veterinarian said several of the shotgun pellets will remain in the turtle’s neck because they didn’t hit a major artery and would be more dangerous to remove.

    The injured animal is one of only 50 green sea turtles in the San Diego area.

    http://www.ktnv.com/story/13978408/endangered-sea-turtle-in-recovery

  3. February 20, 2011

    Rare leatherback turtle spotted in Indonesia

    By Associated Press ,

    JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Conservationists say they got a rare glimpse of a 6–foot (2–meter) –long leatherback — the world’s most endangered sea turtle — together with dozens of eggs in western Indonesia.

    Khairul Amra, a member of a local conservation group, said Thursday that the giant turtle was spotted on a beach on Sumatra island over the weekend just before it plunged into the water.

    Soon after 65 eggs thought to belong to the leatherback were found in a nest — the third such discovery on the same beach this year.

    Leatherbacks, which can grow up to 9 feet (3 meters) long, have roamed the oceans for 100 million years, but the globe–trotting sea turtles today number only around 30,000.

    Their biggest threats are commercial fishing and egg hunters.

  4. How young migrating turtles find their way back home

    2011-02-25 15:30:00

    Researchers from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have finally solved the mystery of how young loggerhead sea turtles find their way back home after a transoceanic migration.

    These turtles begin their journey swimming from the Florida coast eastward to the North Atlantic and then gradually migrating over the course of several years before returning again to North American shores.

    “One of the great mysteries of animal behavior is how migratory animals can navigate in the open ocean, where there are no visual landmarks,” said Kenneth Lohmann.

    “The most difficult part of open-sea navigation is determining longitude or east-west position. It took human navigators centuries to figure out how to determine longitude on their long-distance voyages,” added Nathan Putman.

    The team found that the turtles pick up on magnetic signatures that vary across the Earth’s surface in order to determine their position in space-both east-west and north-south-and steer themselves in the right direction.

    However, they don’t depend on a single feature of the magnetic field, but on a combination of two: the angle at which the magnetic field lines intersect the Earth and the strength of the magnetic field.

    The field lines are parallel to the Earth’s surface near the equator and grow steeper as one reaches the poles. The magnetic field also varies in intensity, being generally strongest near the poles and weakest near the equator.

    “Although it is true that an animal capable of detecting only inclination or only intensity would have a hard time determining longitude, loggerhead sea turtles detect both magnetic parameters,” Putman said.

    “This means that they can extract more information from the Earth’s field than is initially apparent.”

    Because inclination and intensity vary in slightly different directions across the Earth’s surface, particular oceanic regions have distinct magnetic signatures consisting of a unique combination of inclination and intensity.

    The findings may have important implications for the turtles, the researchers say.

    “This work not only solves a long-standing mystery of animal behavior but may also be useful in sea turtle conservation,” Lohmann said.

    “Understanding the sensory cues that turtles rely on to guide their migrations is an important part of safeguarding their environment.”

    The discovery may also lead to new approaches in the development of navigational technologies, the researchers added.

    The study appears on February 24 in Current Biology. (ANI)

  5. Sea turtle’s release to be streamed on the Web

    By Patrick Danner
    pdanner@express-news.net

    Updated 12:36 p.m., Tuesday, August 2, 2011

    Wednesday’s release of the endangered sea turtle nursed back to health with wound-care products made by San Antonio’s Kinetic Concepts Inc. will be streamed live on the Internet.

    Andre, a nearly 200-pound green sea turtle, will be released back into the Atlantic Ocean at 9 a.m. Wednesday in Juno Beach, Fla. The event can be viewed at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/loggerhead-marinelife-center.

    Andre has spent the past 13 months convalescing at the Loggerhead Marinelife Center in Juno Beach after he was hit by boat propellers from at least two watercraft off the Florida coast.

    KCI’s negative-pressure wound-therapy system — called V.A.C. Therapy — and its tissue-regeneration product — called Strattice — played critical roles in saving Andre’s life and helping in his recovery, those involved with his rescue say.

    http://www.mysanantonio.com/business/article/Sea-turtle-s-release-to-be-streamed-on-the-Web-1694242.php#ixzz1TtvFQqhs

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