Where leatherback turtles meet fisheries

Endangered species: Where leatherback turtles meet fisheries - Semantic Scholar

where leatherback turtles meet fisheries

Credit: Paul Vecsei, Fisheries and Oceans Canada Female Leatherback Sea Turtle nesting on a beach in Trinidad and Tobago. GRANT AWARDED: November Pacific leatherback sea turtles swim throughout the world's oceans and nest on beaches within the. The dramatic worldwide decline in populations of the leatherback turtle ( Dermochelys coriacea) is largely due to the high mortality associated with their.

The shell is shaped like a teardrop with 7 distinct dorsal ridges tapering at the tail. Leatherback Sea Turtles are bluish-black in colour with scattered white blotches and have very large paddle-shaped front flippers. The underside of the turtle, or plastron, is mostly pinkish-white.

Interactions Between Leatherback Turtles and Fisheries in the Pacific Ocean

The adult Leatherback Sea Turtles that frequent Atlantic Canadian waters have an average curved carapace shell length of approximately 1.

The throat and esophagus in a Leatherback Sea Turtle are covered with spines, which are believed to be an adaptation to assist in swallowing slippery jellyfish prey.

where leatherback turtles meet fisheries

Habitat Leatherback Sea Turtles are found in the temperate, subtropical and tropical waters of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans. They are migratory animals, with adults travelling up to 18, km each year between their tropical or subtropical nesting beaches and temperate feeding areas.

Leatherback Sea Turtle (Canadian Pacific population)

Atlantic Canada hosts one of the highest densities of foraging Leatherback Sea Turtles in the North Atlantic during the summer, in large part due to a predictable abundance of jellyfish prey.

When in Canada, Leatherbacks can be found in coastal, shelf and offshore waters. They spend the majority of their time within the photic zone the sunlit depths when foraging; however, the species is capable of diving to much greater depths, mostly within metres of the surface.

The Pacific Leatherback has two principal nesting populations: Leatherback Sea Turtles in Canadian Pacific waters are part of the Western Pacific population, migrating long distances up to 15,km from the Indo-Pacific nesting beaches, to forage on jellyfish and other gelatinous prey species.

Leatherbacks are rarely observed in Canadian Pacific waters, with only unique sightings reported in British Columbia waters from to The pelagic nature of this species, combined with the difficulty in sighting them from a distance result in many unknowns with respect to their use of habitat off the coast of British Columbia.

where leatherback turtles meet fisheries

Threats On Indo-Pacific nesting beaches, Leatherback eggs are subject to predation by mammals such as pigs and feral dogs. Nest predation by humans can also be a problem, as Leatherback eggs are consumed as a delicacy in some countries.

where leatherback turtles meet fisheries

Increased development on or near nesting beaches has a negative impact on the hatchlings that emerge from nests, as they are often disoriented by the bright lights and can succumb to exhaustion, dehydration, or predation as they struggle to find their way to the ocean.

Although female Leatherbacks lay about eggs at a time and may nest up to 10 times a season, only a few hatchlings will survive to grow to adulthood and breed. Leatherback Sea Turtles are vulnerable to human-induced threats in the marine environment throughout their lives.

There is substantial evidence that they are incidentally caught in numerous fisheries, and entanglement in fishing gear is not uncommon. While many fishers are careful to release trapped Leatherbacks, some turtles drown or sustain lethal injuries before assistance is given.

Leatherback Sea Turtle (Canadian Pacific population)

Leatherbacks can also become tangled in discarded debris, collide with vessels, or mistake drifting plastic bags and debris for jellyfish prey, the ingestion of which can lead to obstruction of the digestive system and ultimately death from starvation. Diagram of an adult Leatherback Sea Turtle showing its distinguishing features Credit: Canadian Sea Turtle Network. Canada is a member of CITES, and restricts movement or trade of listed species or parts from listed species across its borders.

where leatherback turtles meet fisheries