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Impact of marine heatwaves for sea turtle nest temperatures

Hays, Graeme, Chivers, WJ, Laloe, Jacques-Olivier, Sheppard, C and Esteban, N 2021, Impact of marine heatwaves for sea turtle nest temperatures, Biology Letters, vol. 17, no. 5, pp. 1-5, doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2021.0038.

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Title Impact of marine heatwaves for sea turtle nest temperatures
Author(s) Hays, GraemeORCID iD for Hays, Graeme orcid.org/0000-0002-3314-8189
Chivers, WJ
Laloe, Jacques-OlivierORCID iD for Laloe, Jacques-Olivier orcid.org/0000-0002-1437-1959
Sheppard, C
Esteban, N
Journal name Biology Letters
Volume number 17
Issue number 5
Article ID 20210038
Start page 1
End page 5
Total pages 5
Publisher The Royal Society
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2021-05-12
ISSN 1744-957X
Keyword(s) Chagos Archipelago
climate change
Granger causality testing
Hadley SST
temperature-dependent sex determination
Summary There are major concerns about the ecological impact of extreme weather events. In the oceans, marine heatwaves (MHWs) are an increasing threat causing, for example, recent devastation to coral reefs around the world. We show that these impacts extend to adjacent terrestrial systems and could negatively affect the breeding of endangered species. We demonstrate that during an MHW that resulted in major coral bleaching and mortality in a large, remote marine protected area, anomalously warm temperatures also occurred on sea turtle nesting beaches. Granger causality testing showed that variations in sea surface temperature strongly influenced sand temperatures on beaches. We estimate that the warm conditions on both coral reefs and sandy beaches during the MHW were unprecedented in the last 70 years. Model predictions suggest that the most extreme female-biased hatchling sex ratio and the lowest hatchling survival in nests in the last 70 years both occurred during the heatwave. Our work shows that predicted increases in the frequency and intensity of MHWs will likely have growing impacts on sea turtle nesting beaches as well as other terrestrial coastal environments.
Language eng
DOI 10.1098/rsbl.2021.0038
Indigenous content off
Field of Research 06 Biological Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Free to Read? Yes
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30151424

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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.