Fisheries impact on breeding of olive ridley turtles (Lepidochelys olivacea) along the Gahirmatha coast, Bay of Bengal, Odisha, India
In India, the Gahirmatha coast is among the most important nesting grounds of olive ridley turtles, Lepidochelys olivacea. The coastal waters of Odisha are also subjected to heavy commercial fishing activities, leading to turtle-fisheries conflicts. This study was carried out to quantify the effects of fishing on breeding turtles. Data on stranded, dead turtles were collected during three breeding seasons (2007–08, 2008–09 and 2009–10) between November and April along a 35 km stretch. A total of 13,443 dead olive ridleys were counted (2008–09: n=9502, 2007–08: n=2754, 2009–10: n=1187). Maximum mortality occurred in February. Few strandings of dead male turtles were recorded. Stranded turtles had a curved carapace length between 51.3 and 77 cm. Mortality is largely attributed to drowning in trawl nets and caused by gill nets. A decrease in size of adults may be related to their high mortality.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: April 1, 2016
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- The Herpetological Journal is an international scientific journal that publishes papers on the natural history of amphibians and reptiles. Experimental, observational and theoretical studies are published along with reviews and book reviews. Faunistic lists, letters and results of general surveys are not published unless they shed light on herpetological problems of wider significance.
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