Flexible inter-nesting behaviour of generalist olive ridley turtles in Australia

M. A. Hamel, C. R. McMahon, C. J.A. Bradshaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

While olive ridley turtles (Lepidochelys olivacea) occur throughout tropical oceans their physiological ecology has been poorly documented. In May 2005, satellite-relayed data loggers (SRDLs) were attached during oviposition to four adult female olive ridley turtles on the Wessell Islands, northern Australia. Subsequent nesting haul-outs were determined for two of these turtles using a combination of movement and diving data. Internesting intervals were relatively long (27 and 18 days, respectively) for hard-shelled turtles given the warm (27-28 °C) water temperatures, possibly due to a low metabolic rate for this species. Turtles travelled considerable distances during the internesting interval (200 and 125 km respectively), possibly associated with a search for food or alternative nesting sites. Changes in dive behaviour suggest that olive ridleys prepare for oviposition by searching for an appropriate beach over several days.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-54
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology
Volume359
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Apr 2008
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Activity
  • Dive profile
  • Diving
  • Marine turtle
  • Metabolic rate
  • Movement
  • Temperature

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