The homing journeys of nine loggerhead turtles translocated from their nesting beach to offshore release sites, were reconstructed through Argos and GPS telemetry while their water-related orientation was simultaneously recorded at high temporal resolution by multi-sensor data loggers featuring a three-axis magnetic sensor. All turtles managed to return to the nesting beach area, although with indirect routes encompassing an initial straight leg not precisely oriented towards home, and a successive homebound segment carried out along the coast. Logger data revealed that, after an initial period of disorientation, turtles were able to precisely maintain a consistent direction for several hours while moving in the open sea, even during night-time. Their water-related headings were in accordance with the orientation of the resulting route, showing little or no effect of current drift. This study reveals a biphasic homing strategy of displaced turtles involving an initial orientation weakly related to home and a successive shift to coastal navigation, which is in line with the modern conceptual framework of animal migratory navigation as deriving from sequential mechanisms acting at different spatial scales.

A biphasic navigational strategy in loggerhead sea turtles

Luschi P.
Primo
;
Cerritelli G.;Casale P.
Ultimo
2020-01-01

Abstract

The homing journeys of nine loggerhead turtles translocated from their nesting beach to offshore release sites, were reconstructed through Argos and GPS telemetry while their water-related orientation was simultaneously recorded at high temporal resolution by multi-sensor data loggers featuring a three-axis magnetic sensor. All turtles managed to return to the nesting beach area, although with indirect routes encompassing an initial straight leg not precisely oriented towards home, and a successive homebound segment carried out along the coast. Logger data revealed that, after an initial period of disorientation, turtles were able to precisely maintain a consistent direction for several hours while moving in the open sea, even during night-time. Their water-related headings were in accordance with the orientation of the resulting route, showing little or no effect of current drift. This study reveals a biphasic homing strategy of displaced turtles involving an initial orientation weakly related to home and a successive shift to coastal navigation, which is in line with the modern conceptual framework of animal migratory navigation as deriving from sequential mechanisms acting at different spatial scales.
Luschi, P.; Sozbilen, D.; Cerritelli, G.; Ruffier, F.; Baskale, E.; Casale, P.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/1064293
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