Tracking offshore migrations

Satellite tracking data is coming in for the 3 hawksbill sea turtles that received Platform Terminal Transmitters just over a month ago on Long Island, Antigua. The transmitters have 2 “saltwater switches” that, when exposed to air as the turtle surfaces to breathe, trigger the transmission of its location and stored sensor data (temperature, depth). So far we have been tracking the turtles as they hang around for the 2 week period between their appearances to nest on our study beach.

Recently, hawksbill WH5688, who was first tagged about 10 years ago, laid her final nest and started a markedly different movement path. Instead of hanging around very close to Long Island (the small island to the Northeast on the map), she has struck out on an almost due West route (pictured). Where is she headed? That’s the exciting question we are waiting to answer as she travels further, surfaces more, and sends us more data.

By | 2017-12-01T14:01:52+00:00 September 19th, 2016|Categories: Endangered species, migration, Turtles|Tags: , , |2 Comments

About the Author:

Andrew Maurer
I am a graduate student studying environmental change and hawksbill sea turtle nesting ecology on Long Island, Antigua. Contact me at asmaurer@ncsu.edu.

2 Comments

  1. Dawn Nielsen September 19, 2016 at 3:37 pm

    How far is that?

  2. Andrew Maurer
    Andrew Maurer September 21, 2016 at 12:16 am

    She has been hanging out 12-15 km off the west coast of Antigua. Really quite close and has stopped the due west path there. Pretty interesting. Hope to update her progress as well as the other 2 in the near future. Thanks for your interest!

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