While it’s only about a 10-kilometre stretch, Juno Beach is home to one of the largest aggregations of nesting green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) in Florida and is one of the highest-density nesting beaches in the state. Although this high-profile turtle population has routinely been monitored for nest counts since 1989, an in-depth health assessment of these turtles has never been conducted.
Researchers from Florida Atlantic University’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute and Loggerhead Marinelife Center have conducted the most comprehensive health assessment for a green turtle rookery in the world to date. Findings from the study provide critical insights into various aspects of physiology, biology, and herpesvirus epidemiology of this nesting population and are especially timely as the world observes “Sea Turtle Day.”
Results, recently published in the journal Endangered Species Research , are hopeful for this population of green sea turtles in southeastern Florida and offer important data on the profile of health for future comparative investigations. MORE
Header image: An adult female green sea turtle nesting on Juno Beach, Florida. Credit: Jennifer Reilly.