Conservation Technique of the Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas L. 1758) Nests under the Risk of Tidal Inundation with Hatcheries, on Samandağ Beach, Turkey

Bektaş Sönmez, Şükran Yalçın Özdilek


Eggs of green turtles are at risk from tidal inundation were transferred in hatcheries on Samandağ during nesting season of 2004. In this study; four hatcheries were constructed as well as conducting a control group for each hatchery. It was found that the hatching success in hatcheries was similar to natural nests, but it was higher than control group whereas, the number of dead hatchlings in hatcheries was higher than natural nests. These differences might be due to temperature of nest, the mean nest temperature of hatcheries was higher, and the mean incubation duration was shorter than natural nests. The moisture content differ among nests, and control group nests have higher moisture content than the others. Even if hatcheries have higher hatching success, they have possible negative effect on viability of hatchlings in nest and natural sex ratio. More research is needed on the impacts of hatchery such as alteration of sex ratio and viability of hatchlings in nest.


Chelonia mydas; hatchery; conservation; hatching success; Samandağ

Full Text:



Ackerman A. R. (1997), «The nest environment and the embryonic development of sea turtles,» in: P. L. Lutz and J. A. Musick (eds.), Biology of Sea Turtles, CRC Press, Inc., pp. 83 – 106.

Başkale E. and Kaska Y. (2005), «Sea turtle nest conservation techniques on Southwestern beaches in Turkey,» Israel J. Zool., 51, 13 – 26.

Boulon R. H. Jr. (1999), «Reducing threats to eggs and hatchlings,» in: K. L. Eckert, K. A. Bjorndal, F. A. Abreu-Grobois, and M. Donnelly (eds.), Research and Management Techniques for the Conservation of Sea Turtles, IUCN/MTSG, Publication No. 4, pp. 169 – 175.

Bustard H. R. and Greenham P. (1968), «Physical and chemical factors affecting hatching in the green turtle, Chelonia mydas (L.),» Ecology, 49, 269 – 276.

Dutton D. L., Dutton P. H., Chaloupka M., and Boulon R. H. (2005), «Increase of a Caribbean leatherback turtle Dermochelys coriacea nesting population linked to long-term nest protection,» Biol. Conserv., 126, 186 – 194.

Foley A. M., Peck S. A., Harman G. R., and Richardson L. W. (2000), «Loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) nesting habitat on low-relief mangrove islands in southwest Florida and consequences to hatchling sex ratios,» Herpetologica, 56, 161 – 173.

Fowler L. (1979), «Hatching success and nest predation in the green sea turtle, Chelonia mydas, Tortuguero, Costa Rica,» Ecology, 60, 946 – 955.

Garcia A., Ceballos, G., and Adaya, R. (2003), «Intensive beach management as an improved sea turtle conservation strategy in Mexico,» Biol. Conserv., 111, 253 – 261.

Godfrey M. and Mrosovsky N. (1999), «Estimating hatchling sex ratios,» in: K. L. Eckert, K. A. Bjorndal, F. A. Abreu-Grobois, and M. Donnelly (eds.), Research and Management Techniques for the Conservation of Sea Turtles, IUCN/MTSG, Publication No. 4, pp. 136 – 138.

Huerta B. F. (1995), «Relationship between sand moisture and hatching success of olive ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea), at Escobilla, Oaxaca,» in: J. I. Richardson and T. H. Richardson (eds.), Proc. of the 12th Ann. Workshop on Sea Turtle Biology and Conservation. NOAA Technical Memorandum No. 361, pp. 162 – 165.

Kaska Y., Downie J. R., Tippett R., and Furness R. (1998), «Natural temperature regimes for loggerhead and green turtle nests in the eastern Mediterranean,» Can. J. Zool., 76, 723 – 729.

Kasparek M., Godley B. J., and Broderick A. C. (2001), «Nesting of green turtle, Chelonia mydas, in the Mediterranean: a review of status and conservation needs,» Zool. Middle East, 24, 45 – 74.

Limpus C. J., Baker V., and Miller J. D. (1979), «Movement induced mortality of loggerhead eggs,» Herpetologica, 35, 335 – 338.

Matsuzawa Y., Sato K., Sakamoto W., and Bjorndal K. A. (2002), «Seasonal fluctuations in sand temperature: effects on the incubation period and mortality of loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta) pre-emergent hatchlings in Minabe, Japan,» Mar. Biol., 140, 639 – 646.

Mazaris A. D., Fiksen O., and Matsinos Y. G. (2005), «Using an individual-based model for assessment of sea turtle population viability,» Population Ecol., 47, 179 – 191.

Merritt F. S., Loftin M. K., and Ricketts J. T. (1996), Standard Handbook for Civil Engineers. 4th Edition, McGraw-Hill, New York.

McGehee A. M. (1990), «Effects of moisture on eggs and hatchlings of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta),» Herpetologica, 46, 251 – 258.

Miller J. D. (1985), «Embryology of marine turtles,» in: C. Gans, R. G. Northcutt, and P. Ulinsky (eds.), Biology of the Reptilia. Vol. 14, Acad. Press, London – New York, pp. 269 – 328.

Mortimer J. A. (1990), «The influence of beach sand characteristics on the nesting behavior and clutch survival of green turtles (Chelonia mydas),» Copeia, 1990(3), 802 – 817.

Mortimer J. A. (1999), «Reducing threats to eggs and hatchlings: Hatcheries,» in: K. L. Eckert, K. A. Bjorndal, F. A. Abreu-Grobois, and M. Donnelly (eds.), Research and Management Techniques for the Conservation of Sea Turtles, IUCN/MTSG, Publication No. 4, pp. 175 – 178.

Mrosovsky N. (1980), «Thermal biology of sea turtles,» Am. Zool., 20, 549 – 563.

Mrosovsky N. (2006), «Distorting gene pools by conservation: assessing the case of doomed turtle eggs,» Environm. Manag., 38, 523 – 531.

Ozaner S. (1996), «Accelerated coastal erosion in the Eastern Mediterranean coast of Turkey,» in: A. H. P. M. Salman, M. J. Langeveld, and M. Bonazountas (eds.), Coastal Management and Habitat Conservation, EUCC, Leiden, pp. 443 – 451.

Özdemir B. and Türkozan O. (2006), «Carapacial scute variation in green turtle, Chelonia mydas hatchlings in Northern Cyprus,» Turk. J. Zool., 30, 141 – 146.

Packard G. C. and Packard M. J. (1988), «The physiological ecology of reptilian eggs and embryos,» in: C. Gans, R. B. Huey and A. R. Liss (eds.), Biology of the Reptilia. Vol. 15, Acad. Press, New York, pp. 523 – 605.

Sönmez B., Turan C., and Yalçın Özdilek Ş. (2011), «The effect of relocation on the morphology of green turtle, Chelonia mydas (Linnaeus, 1758) hatchling on Samandağ beach, Turkey,» Zool. Middle East, 52, 29 – 38.

Talbert O. R., Jr., Stancyk S. E., Dean J. M., and Will J. M. (1980), «Nesting activity of the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) in South Carolina I: A rookery in transition,» Copeia, 1980(4), 709 – 719.

Türkozan O., Ilgaz Ç.‚ Taşkavak E., and Özdemir A. (2003), «Hatch rates of loggerhead turtles and physical characteristics of the beach at Fethiye, Turkey,» J. Marine Biol. Ass. UK, 83, 231 – 232.

Wood D. W. and Bjorndal K. A. (2000), «Relation of temperature, moisture, salinity and slope to nest site selection in loggerhead sea turtles,» Copeia, 2000(1), 119 – 128.

Wyneken J., Burke T. J., Salmon M., and Pedersen D. K. (1988), «Egg failure in natural and relocated sea turtle nests,» J. Herpetol., 22, 88 – 96.

Yalçın Ş. (2003), «Evaluation of conservation program for Chelonia mydas in Samandağ coast: a two-year study of monitoring on green sea turtles,» in: Proc. of the First Int. Conf. on Environmental Research and Assessment, Ars Docendi Publ. House, ICERA, Bucharest, pp. 5 – 12.

Yalçın Özdilek Ş. (2007), «Status of sea turtles (Chelonia mydas and Caretta caretta) on Samandağ Beach, Turkey: Evaluation of five-year monitoring study,» Ann. Zool. Fenn., 44(5), 333 – 347.

Yalçın Özdilek Ş., Özdilek H. G., and Ozaner F. S. (2007), «Possible influence of beach sand characteristics on green turtle nesting activity on Samandağ Beach, Turkey,» J. Coastal Res., 23(6), 1379 – 1390.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

You can subscribe to the print or electronic version of the journal on the site of EastView Company. If you have any questions, please write to the email