Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Turtles are loyal in feeding as well as in breeding

25.04.2007
A research team led by the University of Exeter has discovered that, after laying their eggs, sea turtles travel hundreds of miles to feed at exactly the same sites.

The research, funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), shows for the first time that marine turtles appear to be as loyal to specific foraging sites and migratory routes as they are to nesting sites. Published today (25 April) in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, the findings strengthen the argument for the protection of key foraging sites of these endangered species.

‘The extent to which turtles showed fidelity to specific foraging sites and routes was a surprise,’ said Dr Annette Broderick of the University of Exeter. ‘Marine turtles migrate hundreds of miles between breeding and foraging grounds, so it is amazing that they are able to return to exactly the same sites via very similar routes. We do not yet know why they return to the same sites, but these findings give us a much better picture of the behaviour of adult turtles at sea, where they spend the majority of their life cycle.’

Scientists have long known that marine turtles return to the same breeding sites each year, but did not know until now that they also revisited foraging sites. Dr Broderick and her team tracked twenty green and loggerhead turtles nesting at two beaches on Cyprus, using satellite transmitters. All females tracked for more than six months remained in the same foraging grounds, moving to deeper water for the winter where they conducted dives of up to a record breaking 10.2 hours. Five females were also tracked when they nested again up to five years later and returned to the same foraging sites.

... more about:
»Marine »breeding »findings »foraging

Green turtles have been observed cropping sea grass gardens to encourage new growth, so there could be a benefit to them returning to foraging grounds. Loggerheads have an omnivorous diet, including molluscs and crustacea, so the benefit to them revisiting feeding areas is unclear. Scientists do not yet know why this behaviour has evolved, but it is possible that sea turtles are territorial or are responding to limited food resources by sticking to their own feeding patches.

‘There are estimated to be as few as 300 female green turtles breeding annually in the Mediterranean,’ continued Dr Broderick. ‘This new information is timely and our research findings strengthen the case for the protection of key migratory and foraging areas. We have shared our findings with the Libyan authorities and are encouraging them to investigate these ‘hotspots’ further.

One of the major threats to marine turtles globally is fisheries bycatch. Hundreds of thousands of marine turtles die each year as a result of fisheries interactions. Identifying and protecting key habitats is critical for the future of these endangered species.

Sarah Hoyle | alfa
Further information:
http://www.exeter.ac.uk

Further reports about: Marine breeding findings foraging

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht For a chimpanzee, one good turn deserves another
27.06.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Mathematik in den Naturwissenschaften (MPIMIS)

nachricht New method to rapidly map the 'social networks' of proteins
27.06.2017 | Salk Institute

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Predicting eruptions using satellites and math

28.06.2017 | Earth Sciences

Extremely fine measurements of motion in orbiting supermassive black holes

28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Touch Displays WAY-AX and WAY-DX by WayCon

27.06.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>