You are here

Investigating maternal health and hatchling mortality in leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea v.)

Download pdf | Full Screen View

Date Issued:
2013
Summary:
The reproductive success of leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) is typically the lowest of the seven sea turtle species. Why this vital rate is decreased has remained unanswered for nearly a century. Recently, detailed postmortem examination of leatherback hatchlings identified muscular pathologies that suggested possible selenium deficiency. High bodily burdens of mercury compounds are associated with selenium depletion. Selenium is a necessary detoxifying nutrient that itself can be toxic at elevated concentrations. Mercury compounds are toxicants with no known biological function. High bodily concentrations of mercury can be detrimental to marine organismal health, reproduction and survival, both directly and indirectly through inducing selenium depletion. The goals of this dissertation are to evaluate several related hypotheses to explain low leatherback nest success. ... Because leatherbacks take in high volumes of prey, high tissue concentrations of mercury and selenium can result. This study provides the first evidence that chemical contaminants may explain low reproductive success in leatherback sea turtles.
Title: Investigating maternal health and hatchling mortality in leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea v.).
145 views
33 downloads
Name(s): Perrault, Justin R.
Charles E. Schmidt College of Science
Department of Biological Sciences
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2013
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Physical Form: electronic
Extent: xx, 166 p. : ill., maps
Language(s): English
Summary: The reproductive success of leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) is typically the lowest of the seven sea turtle species. Why this vital rate is decreased has remained unanswered for nearly a century. Recently, detailed postmortem examination of leatherback hatchlings identified muscular pathologies that suggested possible selenium deficiency. High bodily burdens of mercury compounds are associated with selenium depletion. Selenium is a necessary detoxifying nutrient that itself can be toxic at elevated concentrations. Mercury compounds are toxicants with no known biological function. High bodily concentrations of mercury can be detrimental to marine organismal health, reproduction and survival, both directly and indirectly through inducing selenium depletion. The goals of this dissertation are to evaluate several related hypotheses to explain low leatherback nest success. ... Because leatherbacks take in high volumes of prey, high tissue concentrations of mercury and selenium can result. This study provides the first evidence that chemical contaminants may explain low reproductive success in leatherback sea turtles.
Identifier: 863701614 (oclc), 3362575 (digitool), FADT3362575 (IID), fau:4222 (fedora)
Note(s): by Justin R. Perrault.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2013.
Includes bibliography.
Mode of access: World Wide Web.
System requirements: Adobe Reader.
Subject(s): Selenium -- Physiological effect
Predation (Biology)
Leatherback turtle -- Mortality
Sea turtles -- Mortality
Wildlife conservation
Held by: FBoU FAUER
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fcla/dt/3362575
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Host Institution: FAU