All-Female Sea Turtle Population May Rule If Warming Continues

Image: All-Female Sea Turtle Population May Rule If Warming Continues

Tuesday, 20 May 2014 11:50 AM

By Michael Mullins

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
An all-female sea turtle population could become a reality if ocean temperatures continue to rise, according to a study published Monday.

The study published in the journal Nature Climate Change said while rising oceanic temperatures will result in a temporary population increase for the sea turtle, due to the higher percentage of females compared to males, eventually as the temperatures continue to rise fewer and fewer male turtles will be born.

As is generally accepted within the scientific community, reptile's reproduction is sensitive to temperature and will result in a lop-sided ratio of female to male offspring if they are born under warmer than usual temperatures, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

According to the study, the point of no return for the sea turtle is when the sand that incubates the eggs reaches a temperature of 84 degrees Fahrenheit after which the female percentage of hatchlings will become the overwhelmingly dominant sex born. At 86.9 degrees Fahrenheit, the sea turtle population will become entirely female.

''There'll be a bit of a breathing space … but down the track it'll be serious,'' study author Graeme Hays, a professor at the Deakin University, told The Sydney Morning Herald.

As remaining males die off, ''it will be end of story without human intervention'', Hays warned.

In addition to sand temperature, the color of the sand in which the sea turtle hatchlings are born also plays a role in their gender.

By studying sea turtles born on Cape Verde Island – off the coast of Western Africa, turtles that are born in light sand beaches have a 70.1 percent chance of being a female, while turtles that are born on beaches with darker sands have a 93.5 percent of being female.

Among the hardest hit thus far by climate change are Green Turtles in the Caribbean, according to the study, which found that their current population is just one percent of their original numbers, NatureWorldNews.com reported.

In addition to rising temperatures, rising sea levels also pose a risk to sea turtle populations, pushing the oceanic reptiles out of their usual nesting areas on the beach.

"Rising sea levels resulting in the loss of nesting beaches (through erosion) could push local turtle populations over the brink unless new suitable nesting beaches are found," Hays told The Sydney Morning Herald.

Related Stories:

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Send me more news as it happens.
 
 
Get me on The Wire
Send me more news as it happens.
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
You May Also Like

Cambodia HIV Outbreak: 100-Plus People Diagnosed; Investigation Sought

Friday, 19 Dec 2014 18:50 PM

More than 100 HIV infections in a single Cambodian village have spurred the country's prime minister to ask for an inves . . .

Slender Man Case: Two Girls Competent to Stand Trial in Stabbing

Friday, 19 Dec 2014 18:26 PM

Two girls who allegedly stabbed a 12-year-old friend over the online game Slender Man are competent to stand trial for a . . .

Kate Upton Sexiest Woman Alive; Model Apologizes to Teen Brother

Friday, 19 Dec 2014 17:52 PM

Model Kate Upton was selected as People magazine's first Sexiest Woman Alive, a month after Chris Hemsworth received the . . .

Top Stories

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved