Hearing Capabilities of Loggerhead Sea Turtles (Caretta caretta) Throughout Ontogeny
Sea turtles are one group of endangered marine animals potentially impacted by anthropogenic sound production. Similar to other migratory marine species, sea turtles occupy different ecological niches throughout ontogeny, each characterized by unique acoustic conditions. Developing sea turtle hatchlings remain in pelagic habitats but then migrate to shallower neritic waters to forage as juveniles and reproduce as adults. Near-shore habitats are typically inundated with low-frequency human-generated sounds (Hawkins and Myrberg 1983) including recreational boating, commercial shipping, and high-intensity signals associated with seismic exploration (Greene and Moore 1995).
KeywordsSound Pressure Level Acoustic Stimulus Life History Stage Seismic Exploration Pelagic Habitat
We gratefully acknowledge financial support from the Exploration and Production Sound and Marine Life Joint Industry Programme, International Association of Oil and Gas Producers, London, UK (JIP22 07–14). We also thank Ben Higgins and the helpful Protected Species Branch staff, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Service Galveston Laboratory, Galveston, TX.
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