Migration patterns of marine turtles in the Gulf of Carpentaria, northern Australia: implications for Aboriginal management
Marine turtles regularly migrate hundreds to thousands of kilometres between nesting beaches and home foraging grounds. Effective conservation of marine turtles requires understanding of migration patterns in order to facilitate regional cooperation across the turtles' migratory range. Indigenous Australians maintain traditional rights and responsibilities for marine turtle management across much of the northern Australian coast. To better understand turtle migrations and identify with whom the Aboriginal people of north-east Arnhem Land (Yolngu) share turtles, we used satellite telemetry to track the migration routes of 20 green turtles ( Chelonia mydas) departing from a nesting beach similar to45 km south of Nhulunbuy, north-east Arnhem Land, Northern Territory, Australia. All tracked turtles remained within the Gulf of Carpentaria. These results suggest that the foraging habitat for adults of this nesting population may be largely confined to the Gulf, offering an optimistic scenario for green turtle conservation. Given these results and the critical role Indigenous people play in conserving and managing marine turtles, we recommend that a formal network of indigenous communities be established as the foundation of a community-based turtle-management strategy for the Gulf of Carpentaria region. Source: Wildlife Research (abstract)
Location(s) of main activity:
Centre for Indigenous Natural and Cultural Resource Management
Number of animals:
Longest signal (no. days):
Shortest signal (no. days):
Migration (general location):
Northern Territory, Australia
Kennett R, Munungurritj N, Yunupingu D (2004) Migration patterns of marine turtles in the Gulf of Carpentaria,
northern Australia: implications for Aboriginal management. Wildl Res 31:241–248
Dhimurru Land management Aboriginal Corporation
Australian Research Council, The Hermon Slade Foundation and the National Geographic Society
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