Understanding the potential impacts of climate change on hawksbill turtle migration
It is important to understand how these features affect sea turtle movements so that we can predict if migration patterns might change in the future with climate change. One of the manifestations of climate change is increasing sea surface temperatures, which have the potential to not only influence sea turtle distribution but also to alter sea surface currents. If sea turtles use these features in their trans-oceanic movements, changes could result in sea turtles using different foraging and nesting areas.
To try and answer some of these questions, WWF is involved in a multi-institutional project that is following the movements of 6 hawksbill turtles as they travel across the Caribbean from their nesting sites in the Dominican Republic. By fitting the turtles with satellite tags it is possible to track their journeys across the sea and see how their movements relate to sea surface temperature, currents and other oceanographic features.
Check out the turtles tagged this season and find out where they are going.