Because sex is determined by incubation temperatures in sea turtles and immature animals are not sexually dimorphic externally, circulating levels of testosterone measured with radioimmunoassay (RIA), in conjunction with laparoscopies, have been used to estimate sex ratios. From September to December 1995 to 1997, and from June to December 1998 to 2002, we sampled blood from 1106 juvenile loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) incidentally captured in pound nets set in Core and Pamlico Sounds, North Carolina to measure testosterone levels. Laparoscopies of 89 of these turtles revealed a sex ratio of 2.1F:1M, similar to other juvenile loggerhead populations along the southeastern coast of the USA. Laparoscopies demonstrated that testosterone levels correctly identified males during summer months (water temperatures >23 C), but were unreliable during late autumn/winter months (water temperatures ≤16 C). During the summer months, females (n = 201) exhibited testosterone concentrations with an upper limit of 239.0 pg/ml, and males (n = 69) exhibited a lower limit of 372.0 pg/ml, for a sex ratio of 2.9F:1.0M. We recommend that verification of the RIA should be conducted by laparoscoping a subset of turtles sampled in all sex ratio studies. In addition, this verification should be conducted at several different times throughout the year to evaluate any possible seasonal effects on testosterone concentrations.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.