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Nesting of the Leatherback Turtle, Dermochelys coriacea in Pacific Mexico, with a New Estimate of the World Population Status

Peter C. H. Pritchard
Copeia
Vol. 1982, No. 4 (Dec. 21, 1982), pp. 741-747
DOI: 10.2307/1444081
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1444081
Page Count: 7
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Nesting of the Leatherback Turtle, Dermochelys coriacea in Pacific Mexico, with a New Estimate of the World Population Status
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Abstract

An aerial survey of the shorelines of the Mexican Pacific states of Michoacan, Guerrero and Oaxaca revealed that nesting by the leatherback turtle, Dermochelys coriacea, occurs in a greater density and over a much greater extent than previously documented. Leatherbacks in this area are referable to a single breeding population which is by far the largest known. A preliminary estimate of the size of this population combined with available information on other populations gives a new world population estimate of 115,000 mature females. Because of severe stresses on all major populations of the species, "endangered" status is still considered justified.

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