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Sea turtle

Hannah B Vander Zanden, Alan B Bolten, Anton D Tucker, Kristen M Hart, Margaret M Lamont, Ikuko Fujisaki, Kimberly J Reich, David S Addison, Katherine L Mansfield, Katrina F Phillips, Mariela Pajuelo, Karen A Bjorndal
Assessments of large-scale disasters, such as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, are problematic because while measurements of post-disturbance conditions are common, measurements of pre-disturbance baselines are only rarely available. Without adequate observations of pre-disaster organismal and environmental conditions, it is impossible to assess the impact of such catastrophes on animal populations and ecological communities. Here, we use long-term biological tissue records to provide pre-disaster data for a vulnerable marine organism...
October 2016: Ecological Applications: a Publication of the Ecological Society of America
Wendy E D Piniak, David A Mann, Craig A Harms, T Todd Jones, Scott A Eckert
Sea turtles spend much of their life in aquatic environments, but critical portions of their life cycle, such as nesting and hatching, occur in terrestrial environments, suggesting that it may be important for them to detect sounds in both air and water. In this study we compared underwater and aerial hearing sensitivities in five juvenile green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) by measuring auditory evoked potential responses to tone pip stimuli. Green sea turtles detected acoustic stimuli in both media, responding to underwater stimuli between 50 and 1600 Hz and aerial stimuli between 50 and 800 Hz, with maximum sensitivity between 200 and 400 Hz underwater and 300 and 400 Hz in air...
2016: PloS One
D K Briscoe, D M Parker, S Bograd, E Hazen, K Scales, G H Balazs, M Kurita, T Saito, H Okamoto, M Rice, J J Polovina, L B Crowder
BACKGROUND: The juvenile stage of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) can last for decades. In the North Pacific Ocean, much is known about their seasonal movements in relation to pelagic habitat, yet understanding their multi-year, basin-scale movements has proven more difficult. Here, we categorize the large-scale movements of 231 turtles satellite tracked from 1997 to 2013 and explore the influence of biological and environmental drivers on basin-scale movement. RESULTS: Results show high residency of juvenile loggerheads within the Central North Pacific and a moderate influence of the Earth's magnetic field, but no real-time environmental driver to explain migratory behavior...
2016: Movement Ecology
Justin R Perrault, Katherine D Bauman, Taylor M Greenan, Patricia C Blum, Michael S Henry, Catherine J Walsh
Blooms of Karenia brevis (also called red tides) occur almost annually in the Gulf of Mexico. The health effects of the neurotoxins (i.e., brevetoxins) produced by this toxic dinoflagellate on marine turtles are poorly understood. Florida's Gulf Coast represents an important foraging and nesting area for a number of marine turtle species. Most studies investigating brevetoxin exposure in marine turtles thus far focus on dead and/or stranded individuals and rarely examine the effects in apparently "healthy" free-ranging individuals...
October 1, 2016: Aquatic Toxicology
Kyle Donnelly, Thomas B Waltzek, James F X Wellehan, Nicole I Stacy, Maria Chadam, Brian A Stacy
Mycobacteriosis is infrequently reported in free-ranging sea turtles. Nontuberculous Mycobacterium haemophilum was identified as the causative agent of disseminated mycobacteriosis in a juvenile leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) that was found stranded on the Atlantic coast of Florida. Disseminated granulomatous inflammation was identified histologically, most notably affecting the nervous system. Identification of mycobacterial infection was based on cytologic, molecular, histologic, and microbiologic methods...
November 2016: Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation
Courtney C Cocilova, Sarah L Milton
Harmful algal blooms are increasing in frequency and extent worldwide and occur nearly annually off the west coast of Florida where they affect both humans and wildlife. The dinoflagellate Karenia brevis is a key organism in Florida red tides that produces a suite of potent neurotoxins collectively referred to as the brevetoxins (PbTx). Brevetoxins bind to and open voltage gated sodium channels (VGSC), increasing cell permeability in excitable cells and depolarizing nerve and muscle tissue. Exposed animals may thus show muscular and neurological symptoms including head bobbing, muscle twitching, paralysis, and coma; large HABs can result in significant morbidity and mortality of marine life, including fish, birds, marine mammals, and sea turtles...
September 28, 2016: Aquatic Toxicology
Kyeongtae Bang, Jooha Kim, Sang-Im Lee, Haecheon Choi
Leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) are known to have a superior diving ability and be highly adapted to pelagic swimming. They have five longitudinal ridges on their carapace. Although it was conjectured that these ridges might be an adaptation for flow control, no rigorous study has been performed to understand their hydrodynamic roles. Here we show that these ridges are slightly misaligned to the streamlines around the body to generate streamwise vortices, and suppress or delay flow separation on the carapace, resulting in enhanced hydrodynamic performances during different modes of swimming...
October 3, 2016: Scientific Reports
Joseph B Pfaller, Michael A Gil
The capacity for resource monopolization by individuals often dictates the size and composition of animal groups, and ultimately, the adoption of mating strategies. For refuge-dwelling animals, the ability (or inability) of individuals to monopolize refuges should depend on the relative size of the refuge. In theory, groups should be larger and more inclusive when refuges are large, and smaller and more exclusive when refuges are small, regardless of refuge type. We test this prediction by comparing the size and composition of groups of oceanic crabs (Planes minutus) living on plastic flotsam and loggerhead sea turtles...
September 2016: Biology Letters
Carla Carpena-Catoira, Christian D Ortega-Ortiz, Fernando R Elorriaga-Verplancken
RATIONALE: Stable isotope analysis can be used to obtain information on olive ridley sea turtles in the Mexican Central Pacific (MCP). Tissue samples such as scale, muscle, and blood are usually not analyzed immediately and are preserved in different substances such as ethanol, formalin, sodium chloride, the ideal being liquid nitrogen. Due to logistical reasons, that preservation method cannot always be used. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the efficiency of DMSO as a preservation agent for later stable isotope analysis...
September 8, 2016: Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry: RCM
Joanne Braun McNeill, Larisa Avens, April Goodman Hall, Lisa R Goshe, Craig A Harms, David W Owens
Alterations have occurred and continue to manifest in the Earth's biota as a result of climate change. Animals exhibiting temperature dependent sex determination (TSD), including sea turtles, are perhaps most vulnerable to a warming of the Earth as highly skewed sex ratios can result, potentially leading to population extinction resulting from decreased male recruitment. Recent studies have begun to quantify climate change impacts to sea turtle populations, especially in terms of predicting effects on hatchling sex ratios...
2016: PloS One
Phoebe A Chapman, Rebecca J Traub, Myat T Kyaw-Tanner, Helen Owen, Mark Flint, Thomas H Cribb, Paul C Mills
Blood flukes are among the most common disease causing pathogens infecting vertebrates, including humans and some of the world's most globally endangered fauna. Spirorchiid blood flukes are parasites of marine turtles, and are associated with pathology, strandings and mortalities worldwide. Their ova embolize in tissues and incite significant inflammatory responses, however attempts to draw correlations between species and lesions are frustrated by difficulties in identifying ova beyond the genus level. In this study, a newly developed terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) method was validated as a tool for differentiating between mixed spirorchiid ova in turtle tissue...
2016: PloS One
S-J Royer, M Galí, A S Mahajan, O N Ross, G L Pérez, E S Saltzman, R Simó
Emission of the trace gas dimethylsulphide (DMS) from the ocean influences the chemical and optical properties of the atmosphere, and the olfactory landscape for foraging marine birds, turtles and mammals. DMS concentration has been seen to vary across seasons and latitudes with plankton taxonomy and activity, and following the seascape of ocean's physics. However, whether and how does it vary at the time scales of meteorology and day-night cycles is largely unknown. Here we used high-resolution measurements over time and depth within coherent water patches in the open sea to show that DMS concentration responded rapidly but resiliently to mesoscale meteorological perturbation...
2016: Scientific Reports
Alonzo Alfaro-Núñez, Anders Miki Bojesen, Mads F Bertelsen, Nathan Wales, George H Balazs, M Thomas P Gilbert
The Chelonid herpesvirus 5 (ChHV5) has been consistently associated with fibropapillomatosis (FP), a transmissible neoplastic disease of marine turtles. Whether ChHV5 plays a causal role remains debated, partly because while FP tumours have been clearly documented to contain high concentrations of ChHV5 DNA, recent PCR-based studies have demonstrated that large proportions of asymptomatic marine turtles are also carriers of ChHV5. We used a real-time PCR assay to quantify the levels of ChHV5 Glycoprotein B (gB) DNA in both tumour and non-tumour skin tissues, from clinically affected and healthy turtles drawn from distant ocean basins across four species...
2016: PeerJ
Eugenia Pasanisi, Adriana A Cortés-Gómez, Marcos Pérez-López, Francisco Soler, David Hernández-Moreno, Cristiana Guerranti, Tania Martellini, Gisela Fuentes-Mascorro, Diego Romero, Alessandra Cincinelli
Lepidochelys olivacea is the most abundant and globally distributed sea turtle species in the world and thus, monitoring this species for persistent organic pollutants, such as perfluorinated chemicals, is fundamental for their protection. This study was the first to evaluate the occurrence of five PFCAs (PFOA, PFNA, PFDA, PFUnA, PFDoA) in liver and blood samples of Olive Ridley turtle population from the Escobilla beach (Oaxaca, Mexico). PFDA and PFUnA were the predominant PFCs in blood samples (detected in 93% and 84% of samples, respectively) and were also present in the highest concentrations...
August 10, 2016: Science of the Total Environment
Josilene da Silva, Satie Taniguchi, José Henrique Becker, Max Rondon Werneck, Rosalinda Carmela Montone
Organochlorines (OCs), such as pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), are persistent, toxic and widely distributed through atmospheric transport and ocean currents. Few studies have been conducted on OCs in sea turtles, especially on the coast of Brazil. Chelonia mydas is the largest hard-shell sea turtle and is found tropical and subtropical regions in all oceans. The aim of the present study was to determine the occurrence of OCs in the green sea turtle (C. mydas). Fat, liver, kidney and muscle samples were collected from 27 juveniles found on the beach of the city of Ubatuba on the northern coast of the state of São Paulo, Brazil...
November 15, 2016: Marine Pollution Bulletin
Khaled F A Abdelrhman, Giovanni Bacci, Cecilia Mancusi, Alessio Mengoni, Fabrizio Serena, Alberto Ugolini
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2016: Frontiers in Microbiology
Sara D Ferguson, James F X Wellehan, Salvatore Frasca, Charles J Innis, Heather S Harris, Melissa Miller, E Scott Weber, Heather Stockdale Walden, Ellis C Greiner, Constance Merigo, Brian A Stacy
Histologic lesions incidental to the cause of death were observed in the adrenal glands of 17 subadult and adult leatherback sea turtles ( Dermochelys coriacea ) found dead or moribund on or near shore in North America. Round bodies, 250-300 μm in diameter composed of an outer capsule and large multinucleated cells surrounding a central mass of acellular material were distributed throughout the affected glands. Protozoal etiology was suspected based on some resemblance to coccidia; however, features diagnostic for coccidial infection were lacking in all but one case, which had a focal area of adrenalitis containing zoites...
October 2016: Journal of Wildlife Diseases
Saindou Ben Ali Mbaé, Mohamed Mlindassé, Saindou Mihidjaé, Thomas Seyler
On 24-December-2012 newspapers reported food-poisoning cases in Ndrondroni, Comoros. The authors conducted an investigation and a case-control study to identify the source and control the outbreak. They identified eight cases. A 6-month breastfed infant died. The results suggest consumption of Eretmochelys imbricata caused the outbreak. A bio-toxin ingested by the turtle might be the source. The local authorities informed the population on the danger of turtle-meat consumption. Cooking does not destroy the toxin...
September 15, 2016: Toxicon: Official Journal of the International Society on Toxinology
S K Baliarsingh, Aneesh A Lotliker, Vera L Trainer, Mark L Wells, Chandanlal Parida, Biraja K Sahu, Suchismita Srichandan, Subhashree Sahoo, K C Sahu, T Sinivasa Kumar
An intense bloom of red Noctiluca scintillans (NS) occurred off the Rushikulya estuarine region along the east coast of India, an important site for mass nesting events of the vulnerable Olive Ridley sea turtle. At its peak, densities of NS were 3.3×10(5) cells-l(-1), with low relative abundance of other phytoplankton. The peak bloom coincided with high abundance of gelatinous planktivores which may have facilitated bloom development by their grazing on other zooplankton, particularly copepods. Ammonium concentrations increased by approximately 4-fold in the later stages of bloom, coincident with stable NS abundance and chlorophyll concentrations in the nano- and microplankton...
October 15, 2016: Marine Pollution Bulletin
F Sarı, Y Kaska
The sex of neonatal sea turtles is difficult to determine, because neonates lack heteromorphic sex chromosomes and dimorphic external characteristics; internal dimorphic morphology is defined at hatching. We used histochemical staining and made measurements in the gonads and paramesonephric ducts (PD) of both sexes to determine structural differences in female and male loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta) hatchlings. We detected differences in the gonads and PD between the sexes including the amounts of mucopolysaccharides, collagen and elastic fibers...
August 2016: Biotechnic & Histochemistry: Official Publication of the Biological Stain Commission
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