Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2445/187033
Title: Assessing the use of marine protected areas by loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) tracked from the western Mediterranean.
Author: Abalo-Morla, Sara
Belda, Eduardo J.
March, David
Revuelta, Ohiana
Cardona Pascual, Luis
Giralt, Silvia
Crespo-Picazo, Jose Luis
Hochscheid, Sandra
Marco, Adolfo
Merchán, Manuel
Sagarminaga, Ricardo
Swimmer, Yonat
Tomás, Jesús
Keywords: Àrees marines protegides
Mediterrània (Mar)
Tortugues marines
Marine protected areas
Mediterranean Sea
Sea turtles
Issue Date: Oct-2022
Publisher: Elsevier
Abstract: Up to date 264 Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) have been declared in the western Mediterranean Sea. The management plans of 25 of these MPAs include the loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta) as a priority species to protect. However, the actual use of these MPAs by the species remains unknown. Therefore, it is important to assess their contribution to loggerhead conservation in the area. To this end, satellite tracking data of 103 loggerhead turtles of varying sizes and life stages released in Spanish Mediterranean waters and Southern Tyrrhenian Sea over the 2003-2018 period were herein used. Home range and use of MPAs by tracked loggerhead turtles were analysed using post-processed state-space model locations. The tracked turtles visited several Mediterranean MPAs, but barely used them (mean percentage of monitoring time = 12.6 ± 18.2 %). There was very little overlap between turtle's core areas and tracks with the protected areas. Indeed, most of the core areas and high-density areas estimated (>85 %) were not included within any of the MPAs. Furthermore, less than 5 % of the Mediterranean MPAs were used by any tracked loggerhead sea turtles. Most of these MPAs have no protection measures that focus on this species. Loggerheads mainly use wide oceanic zones and international waters, which are difficult to protect. A high-use core area was identified for loggerhead turtles, located at the western waters of the Algerian Basin, an important fishing area outside any designated MPA and with no protection measures that focus on marine turtle conservation. We conclude that existing MPAs in the western Mediterranean may not contribute enough to loggerhead turtle conservation. We propose potential MPAs designations to be considered for loggerhead sea turtle conservation in the Mediterranean Sea at the Alboran Sea, the Algerian basin, the Northern area of the Strait of Sicily, Northeast Tunisian waters, waters around Malta, waters at the Tyrrhenian Sea and at the Ionian Sea.
Note: Reproducció del document publicat a: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gecco.2022.e02196
It is part of: Global Ecology and Conservation, 2022, vol. 38, num. e02196, p. 1-17
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2445/187033
Related resource: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gecco.2022.e02196
ISSN: 2351-9894
Appears in Collections:Articles publicats en revistes (Biologia Evolutiva, Ecologia i Ciències Ambientals)

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