Detection, Verification and Decoding of Tags and Marks in Head Started Kemp's Ridley Sea Turtles, Lepidochelys kempii


Preparation of this manual was motivated by recommendations made by a peer review panel of experts who evaluated the Kemp's ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys kempii) head start experiment at the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Southeast Fisheries Science Center's (SEFSC)Galveston Laboratory on September 22-23, 1992 (Eckert et al. 1992). After examining the head start experimental design, data and analytical results, the panel expressed the goal of the experiment in the following hypotheses (modified slightly for clarity by the authors of this paper; see also Wibbels et al. 1989): (1) Head starting can provide Kemp's ridley juveniles which are able to join the natural population, mature, find their way to nesting beaches and procreate (produce viable progeny), and (2) head started turtles demonstrate equivalent or superior biological fitness, defined as equal or better survival rates from egg to reproductive adult, and equivalent fecundity as compared to wild Kemp's ridleys.


40 pages; available for download at the link below.


Kemp's ridley sea turtle, experimental design, biological monitoring, identification, turtle identification, identification tagging, sea turtles