Cape Verdean Loggerhead Turtles More Climate Change Resilient than Expected

by Wendy Noreña

Following growing concerns about the potential effects of climate change, scientists have begun to study declining levels of biodiversity in the natural world. Of especially large concern are cheloniid reptiles, or turtles, which are ectothermic organisms that rely heavily on atmospheric temperatures and regular seasons to regulate internal temperatures, metabolic rates, and, for turtles, male-to-female sex ratios during egg incubation. Marine turtles are of particular interest to conservation work as there are only seven species, there already exists a large amount of research about them, and, most importantly, they are even more susceptible to climate change than other turtle species because of their beach-dependent nesting habits. Though much has been done to form quantitative analyses of marine turtles’ current state in the face of recent climate fluctuations, Perez et. al. seek to create a qualitative ranking system with which to gauge the resilience, or potential to withstand environmental change, of a reptile now and in the future. Continue reading