Project seeks to protect Cayman Island sea turtles from climate impacts

The effort will seek ways to aid the turtles and the coastal areas they occupy

Researchers are investigating how to protect sea turtles in the Cayman Islands from the multiple threats caused by climate change. The islands’ sea turtles are recovering from over-harvesting, but climate change is causing habitat loss and an increasingly female population (the sex of turtle hatchlings is determined by temperature), and it has the potential to reduce egg-hatching success.

The new project, run by the Cayman Islands Department of Environment and the University of Exeter, will assess the impacts of rising temperatures, increased storminess and sea-level rise, and devise ways to protect turtles and improve management of coastal areas.

The project has received a grant of almost 400,000 pounds from the UK’s Government’s Darwin Plus program, which funds biodiversity and climate change mitigation projects in UK overseas territories.

Read more from the University of Exeter.

Header Image: A nesting green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) returns to the sea in the Cayman Islands. Credit: Cayman Islands Government