Sea Turtle Internal Funding Allocation (IFA)

The Sea Turtle Assessment IFA is designed to support NMFS Science Center-led projects that will improve the quality of sea turtle assessments by addressing themes drawn from the the 2013 Sea Turtle Assessment Status and Research Needs report, Endangered Species Act recovery plans and 5-year reviews, and the 2004 marine protected species stock assessment implementation plan (SAIP), including data and analysis gaps. Funded projects (listed below) have included those that collect data and conduct research and analyses related to stock identification, abundance and distribution, life history and vital rates, and anthropogenic impacts. 

This is a 2-year IFA that involves a rigorous two-step external and internal peer-review process. 

Contact: Dr. Mridula Srinivasan, mridula.srinivasan@noaa.gov

Funded Projects:

2016-2017

2015

  • Refining methods for characterizing and monitoring sea turtle population sex ratios (SWFSC and SEFSC)
  • Fine scale genetic population assessment of leatherback turtles (SWFSC)
  • Occurrence and distribution of loggerhead turtles off of southern California, USA (SWFSC)
  • Space use, movement, and distribution of leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) in the Gulf of Mexico II (SEFSC)
  • Projecting the effects of climate change on leatherback turtle habitat within the U.S. Northeast Shelf (NEFSC)
  • Using satellite telemetry data to estimate loggerhead availability to aerial observers in the poorly-understood northern Northwest Atlantic Ocean (NEFSC)

2014

  • Stock structure, connectivity and breeding sex ratios of Pacific hawksbills (SWFSC)
  • Establishing sex ratios of sea turtle foraging populations: validation of a novel testosterone hormone assay technology and sex assessment for five species (SWFSC)
  • Establishing demographic parameters for loggerhead turtles in the northeastern Pacific Ocean: growth rates, age determination, annual habitat use, and population connectivity (SWFSC)
  • Synthesis and analysis of environmental data to inform the interpretation of in-water and survey data and to improve assessment quality (NEFSC)
  • Characterization of loggerhead sea turtle abundance and habitat use at a seasonal 'hot spot' using mark-recapture, autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) surveys and telemetry (SEFSC)
  • Space use, movement, and distribution of leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) in the Gulf of Mexico (SEFSC)
  • Nearshore habitat usage of juvenile Kemp’s ridleys in the Northern Gulf Of Mexico (SEFSC)

2013

  • Establishing demographic parameters of green turtles along the U.S. West Coast: survival rates, abundance, sex ratios, age validation, age at neritic recruitment, and population connectivity (SWFSC)
  • Tracking the sea turtle "lost years": early dispersal,  survival, foraging ecology and habitat use of oceanic stage sea turtles in the Gulf of Mexico (SEFSC)
  • Stock structure, connectivity and breeding sex ratios of eastern Pacific hawksbills (SWFSC)
  • Tracking juvenile leatherbacks in the central Pacific Ocean (PIFSC)
  • Assessing abundance and foraging habitat affinities of western Pacific leatherback turtles in coastal waters of California, USA (SWFSC)
  • Improving capacity of stock assessment for sea turtles: using ocean circulation modeling to inform genetic mixed stock analysis (SWFSC and PIFSC)

2012

  • Second meeting of the Pacific Leatherback Assessment Working Group (PIFSC and SWFSC)
  • Applying new genetic approaches to improve quality of population assessment of green and loggerhead turtles (SWFSC)
  • Annual survival of Peninsular Florida nesting loggerhead turtles (SEFSC)
  • Application of new genetic approaches to obtain population vital rate parameters in leatherbacks (SWFSC)
  • Northwest Atlantic loggerhead nesting variability and trends: a mechanistic modeling approach to understand the synergistic effects of climate and fisheries (NEFSC)

2011

  • 2011 aerial survey of distribution and abundance of western Pacific leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) in coastal waters of Oregon and Washington (SWFSC)
  • Applying new genetic approaches to improve quality of population assessment of leatherback turtles (SWFSC)
  • Establishing life history parameters for marine turtles: sex ratios, age validation, and age at neritic recruitment (SWFSC)
  • Assessment of age and size at maturation and adult stage duration for loggerhead sea turtles in the western North Atlantic (SEFSC)
  • Neonate loggerhead dispersal, behavior, and survivorship in the Western North Atlantic (SEFSC)

2010

  • Aerial survey of distribution and abundance of western Pacific leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) in coastal waters of Oregon and Washington (SWFSC)
  • Elucidating stock boundaries and Distinct Population Segment structure for green turtles (SWFSC)
  • Stable isotope analysis of marine turtle tissues and further development of 'isotopic map' for the Pacific Ocean (SWFSC)
  • Pelagic survival of juvenile loggerheads (SEFSC)

Green sea turtle (PIFSC)