Hi Reddit! We’re NOAA Fisheries scientists Cali Turner Tomaszewicz and Larisa Avens. We study sea turtles using a combination of cutting-edge technologies and we’re excited to share our latest research with you during NOAA Sea Turtle Week (June 11-15).
Sea turtles are notoriously difficult to track during their formative years. For a long time, it was unknown where juvenile sea turtles were living and feeding. Hatchlings would depart their nesting beach and show up again years later much larger with little indication of where they had gone and how they had survived. New technology and research methods allow us to not only accurately age sea turtles, but also examine chemical signatures in their bones to determine their diet, location, and health at certain points of their life.
Valuable information like this can tell us a lot about sea turtle range and foraging habits, helping us more effectively protect their habitat and food sources. We have even adapted this information into tools such as TurtleWatch, which provides real time predictions of where turtles are most likely to occur based on sea surface temperatures. These predictions are communicated to fishermen who can avoid these hotspot areas, thus preventing potential sea turtle bycatch in their fishing gear.
If you are interested in sea turtles and the people who spend their lives studying them, this is your chance to learn more from NOAA scientists. We’ll be here from 1:00 - 3:00 p.m. ET. Ask us anything!
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