Loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta) have been laying eggs in an indoor artificial beach since 1995, at the Port of Nagoya Public Aquarium (PNPA). Four individuals landed and laid eggs several times during the breeding period in 1996. Blood samples from these individuals were collected monthly throughout that year in order to investigate the changes in sex steroid hormones (testosterone, estradiol, and progesterone). In addition, detailed investigations were conducted daily during the breeding period on one particular individual that landed and laid eggs five times in 1998. Each steroid hormone changed periodically based on the laying cycle, and extraordinarily high levels of estradiol were noted even during the breeding period. In reports regarding the green turtle (Chelonia mydas), extremely different results were observed. Some of the obtained data suggest that progesterone induced ovulation. Data from a completely artificial environment such as the one at the PNPA provides elucidation of the reproductive physiology in these endangered species.
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