Movement patterns of green turtles (Chelonia mydas) in Cuba and adjacent Caribbean waters inferred from flipper tag recaptures
Abbreviated Journal Title
SATELLITE TELEMETRY; POPULATION; MIGRATION; COAST; Zoology
To study the movement patterns of Green Seaturtle (Chelonia mydas) populations in the Caribbean region using Cuban habitats, tag-recapture data from local (Cuban National Tagging Program 19892002) and international programs (1959-2002) were compiled and compared. Of the 742 turtles tagged in Cuba at fishing areas, nesting beaches and head-start facilities, 5.5% were recaptured, mostly outside of Cuban waters and with a majority of these (76.9%) off the coast of Nicaragua. Green Seaturtles tagged elsewhere and recaptured in Cuba included head-started juveniles from Grand Cayman (45% of the total), Mexico (2.3%), and Florida (1.8%); wild juveniles from the Bahamas (14.1%), Bermuda (5.4%), and Florida (1.5%); and adults from Tortuguero (26%), Florida, USA (1.3%), Mexico (1%), Venezuela (1.3%), and U.S. Virgin Islands (0.3%0). Recaptures of tags placed at sites north of Cuba (Bermuda and the Bahamas) clustered in the northeast region of Cuba, whereas those from the south (Grand Cayman) were recaptured in southern areas. Recaptures from Tortuguero tags were concentrated in the southeast and westward regions of Cuba. Turtles from the Bahamas, Grand Cayman, and Bermuda showed the highest recapture rates in Cuban habitats, with 3.2, 1.9, and 1.0% of the total number of tags applied, respectively. These results for a broad range of populations and across life stages underscore the regionwide significance of Cuban sites as critical habitats or migratory corridors.
Journal of Herpetology
"Movement patterns of green turtles (Chelonia mydas) in Cuba and adjacent Caribbean waters inferred from flipper tag recaptures" (2006). Faculty Bibliography 2000s. 6451.