2015 IPFW Student Research and Creative Endeavor Symposium



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Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Frank Paladino


Department of Biology

University Affiliation

Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne


Remigration intervals between nesting seasons in sea turtles can vary depending on the species, population, foraging resources, and individual fecundity among others. Green turtles (Chelonia mydas) follow this pattern, with Pacific populations often having more years between breeding than those in the Atlantic Ocean. At Playa Cabuyal, Costa Rica, we began monitoring turtle nesting activities in 2010-2011, and started registering remigrant females during the 2013- 2014 nesting season. We looked at the length of remigration intervals of green turtles on this beach, and the potential variables that impact the length of the remigration interval. To facilitate this, literature from other green turtle nesting aggregations was used as a comparison against those from Playa Cabuyal. We also explored the turtles' size, number of clutches per season, and clutch size to correlate these variables to the remigration intervals. We have seen green turtles return at Playa Cabuyal in two, three, and four-year intervals, with over 15% of tagged turtles returning. Assessing the variation between these nesting activities will provide this monitoring project with the necessary information to effectively manage local sea turtles. This analysis will also provide a novel view of pacific green turtle nesting population dynamics at Playa Caubyal, that until recently was unprotected.


Biology | Life Sciences

Assessment of Nesting Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas) Remigration Intervals in Playa Cabuyal, Costa Rica

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