Evidence-based Protection of Sea Turtle Eggs and Hatchery Practices

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Andrea D Phillott, Nupur Kale


It is important for emerging conservationists and wildlife managers to gain experience in the use of evidence-based conservation, by way of critical analysis and understanding of the context and application of conservation actions. We developed a teaching case and activity for undergraduate and graduate courses in conservation biology, wildlife management etc., although it could also be adopted for upper-level high school classes. The case is based on a recent study that assesses hatchery practices in India. Hatcheries are commonly established to protect sea turtle eggs and hatchlings from threats at the nesting beach. Guidelines for sea turtle hatcheries have been widely available and followed by sea turtle conservationists for decades, and their use has potentially contributed to successful conservation of some sea turtle populations worldwide. However, best practices in the collection, transport, and incubation of eggs, and holding and release of hatchlings should be followed to ensure hatchling production and fitness exceeds that of unprotected nests. The teaching activity builds conservation science literacy as students identify studies describing methods to assess risks to in situ clutches and mitigate threats including tidal inundation, depredation, and illegal take. A practical exercise asks students to assess threats at multiple nesting beaches on an island and propose which protection strategy (protect in situ, relocate to safer individual location on the beach, or relocate to a hatchery) would be most appropriate at different locations




Biodiversity, Biology, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences, Marine Biology


egg, evidence, hatchery, hatchling, protection, sea turtle, threats


Published: 2022-03-24 01:34


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