|Early growth and oceanic survival of pen-reared sea turtles|
Witham, R.; Futch, C.R. (1977). Early growth and oceanic survival of pen-reared sea turtles. Herpetologica 33(4): 404-409
In: Herpetologica. The Herpetologists' League: Austin, TX etc.. ISSN 0018-0831; e-ISSN 1938-5099
Population functions > Growth
Caretta caretta (Linnaeus, 1758) [WoRMS]; Chelonia mydas (Linnaeus, 1758) [WoRMS]; Dermochelys coriacea (Vandelli, 1761) [WoRMS]
|Auteurs|| || Top |
Eggs of the green turtle, Chelonia mydas; loggerhead turtle, Caretta caretta; and leatherback turtle, Dermochelys coriacea were gathered from Hutchinson Island, Florida, USA, during 1971 and 1972, and incubated in the laboratory. Hatchlings were pen reared at several facilities. During 1971, 61% of green turtle eggs hatched, and in 1972, 58% hatched; no data were obtained for loggerhead or leatherback turtles. Mean carapace length of 25 randomly selected green turtles was 21 . 4 cm and mean total weight was 1 . 302 kg at age 1 year. Mean carapace length of 25 randomly selected loggerhead turtles was 18 . 4 cm and mean total weight was 1 . 278 kg at age 1 year. Leatherback turtles grew rapidly on a diet of Cassiopeia xamachana (Cnidaria: Scyphozoa); at age 6 months, 1 leatherback turtle weighed 1 . 642 kg. A wide range of individual growth rates was found for each species. Short-term studies indicated no differences in growth of green turtles fed either fish only or an omnivorous diet, and that green and loggerhead turtles grew well on a diet of C. xamachana. Recapture of 21 tagged green turtles released from Florida suggests that hatchery reared turtles can survive in nature.