Marine Biology

, Volume 144, Issue 4, pp 807–811 | Cite as

Remigration and growth of loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta) nesting on Senri Beach in Minabe, Japan: life-history polymorphism in a sea turtle population

  • H. HataseEmail author
  • Y. Matsuzawa
  • K. Sato
  • T. Bando
  • K. Goto
Research Article


There are size-related differences in the use of feeding habitats (planktonic or benthic; oceanic or neritic) by adult female loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) within Japanese populations. We thus hypothesized that the differences may be reflected in their remigration and growth patterns, and investigated the relationships between body size and remigration intervals, growth rates, and remigration percentages, for female loggerheads nesting on a Japanese beach between 1991 and 2001. Although remigration intervals, growth rates, and remigration percentages were not significantly different among females, there were trends for longer remigration intervals and lower remigration percentages in smaller females. All females grew little. Considering these results along with previous findings, we speculated on the life-history strategy of female Japanese loggerheads.


Beach Green Turtle Small Female Nest Season Loggerhead Turtle 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We thank numerous volunteers for helping with nightly patrols on Senri Beach. We also thank the Sea Turtle Association of Japan for supplying tags, tagging pliers, and calipers. W. Sakamoto and H. Tanaka provided useful advice on this work. Three anonymous referees critically read this manuscript and provided constructive comments. This work was partly supported by grants from Research Fellowships of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) for Young Scientists (H.H., Y.M., and K.S.) and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (no. 05454093). The experiments were conducted under licenses issued by the municipality of Minabe Town and complied with the current Japanese laws.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. Hatase
    • 1
    • 4
    Email author
  • Y. Matsuzawa
    • 1
    • 5
  • K. Sato
    • 2
  • T. Bando
    • 1
    • 6
  • K. Goto
    • 3
  1. 1.Laboratory of Fisheries and Environmental Oceanography, Graduate School of AgricultureKyoto UniversitySakyoJapan
  2. 2.National Institute of Polar ResearchItabashiJapan
  3. 3.Minabe Sea Turtle Research GroupMinabeJapan
  4. 4.Ocean Research InstituteUniversity of TokyoNakanoJapan
  5. 5.Sea Turtle Association of JapanHirakataJapan
  6. 6.Institute of Cetacean ResearchChuoJapan

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