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  • Ingestion of marine debris by loggerhead sea turtles, Caretta caretta, in the Adriatic Sea.

Ingestion of marine debris by loggerhead sea turtles, Caretta caretta, in the Adriatic Sea.

Marine pollution bulletin (2010-11-03)
Bojan Lazar, Romana Gračan
ABSTRACT

We examined the occurrence of marine debris in the gastrointestinal tract of 54 loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) found stranded or incidentally captured dead by fisheries in the Adriatic Sea, with a curved carapace length of 25.0-79.2 cm. Marine debris was present in 35.2% of turtles and included soft plastic, ropes, Styrofoam and monofilament lines found in 68.4%, 42.1%, 15.8% and 5.3% of loggerheads that have ingested debris, respectively. The dry mass of debris per turtle was low, ranging from <0.01 to 0.71 g, and the ingestion was not significantly affected by sex or body size (all p>0.05). Marine debris averaged 2.2 ± 8.0% of dry mass of gut content, with a maximum of 35% found in a juvenile turtle that most likely died due to debris ingestion. Considering the relatively high occurrence of debris intake and possible sub-lethal effects of even small quantities of marine debris, this can be an additional factor of concern for loggerheads in the Adriatic Sea.

MATERIALS
Product Number
Brand
Product Description

Sigma-Aldrich
Polystyrene, average Mw ~350,000, average Mn ~170,000
Sigma-Aldrich
Polystyrene, average Mw ~400,000 by GPC
Sigma-Aldrich
Polystyrene, average Mw ~192,000
Sigma-Aldrich
Polystyrene, average Mw ~280,000 by GPC