Somatic growth rates for a hawksbill turtle population in coral reef habitat around Barbados

Krueger, Barry H., Chaloupka, Milani Y., Leighton, Patrick A., Dunn, Jennifer A. and Horrocks, Julia A. (2011) Somatic growth rates for a hawksbill turtle population in coral reef habitat around Barbados. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 432 269-276. doi:10.3354/meps09125


Author Krueger, Barry H.
Chaloupka, Milani Y.
Leighton, Patrick A.
Dunn, Jennifer A.
Horrocks, Julia A.
Title Somatic growth rates for a hawksbill turtle population in coral reef habitat around Barbados
Journal name Marine Ecology Progress Series   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0171-8630
1616-1599
Publication date 2011-06-27
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.3354/meps09125
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 432
Start page 269
End page 276
Total pages 8
Place of publication Oldendorf, Germany
Publisher Inter-Research
Formatted abstract
A generalized additive mixed modelling approach was used to investigate the somatic growth of hawksbill turtles Eretmochelys imbricata (23.7 to 80 cm curved carapace length [CCL]) on nearshore coral reef sites around Barbados at depths of 12 to 35 m. The effects of body size, sex, sampling year, recapture interval and an indicator of foraging habitat quality on growth rates were investigated. The model accounted for about 60% of the variance in growth rates, but only mean size and sampling year were significant predictors. The growth rate function was nonmonotonic, with peak growth (3.4 cm yr-1) occurring in turtles with a CCL between 30 and 35 cm. The lower growth rates recorded for smaller turtles may reflect a period when sea turtles newly recruiting from pelagic to neritic habitats are adapting to a change in diet. The decline in growth rates with sampling year over the 10 yr study may reflect density-dependent effects on growth. Declining growth rates may prompt large juveniles to leave the Barbados foraging ground to settle elsewhere to grow to maturity.
Keyword Barbados
Density-dependent effect
Developmental habitat
Eretmochelys imbricata
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Biological Sciences Publications
 
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