Since 2001, Grupo Tortuguero has been conducting monthly inwater monitoring of East Pacific green turtles (Chelonia mydas), also known as black turtles, at four neritic foraging areas (Bahía Magdalena, Laguna San Ignacio, Punta Abreojos, Laguna Ojo de Liebre) along the Pacific coast of Baja California Sur, Mexico. Extensive tagging (883 turtles tagged of 1,183 turtles captured) and recaptures (154 tagged turtles recaptured at least once) at these four areas suggest that immature East Pacific green turtles show strong site fidelity to their neritic foraging grounds. However, in 2007, we recaptured two immature turtles, one in Laguna San Ignacio and the other in Bahía Magdalena, that were both originally captured in Punta Abreojos. To our knowledge, this represents the first direct evidence of immature East Pacific green turtles using multiple foraging areas along the Baja California Peninsula. This report highlights the importance of long-term monitoring efforts that encompass several habitats on a relatively large spatial scale (∼80 km between Punta Abreojos and Laguna San Ignacio and ∼300 km between Punta Abreojos and Bahía Magdalena) to better understand the movements and habitat use of immature East Pacific green turtles on their neritic foraging areas.
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Vol. 64 • No. 1