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Revista de Biología Tropical

On-line version ISSN 0034-7744Print version ISSN 0034-7744


SANDOVAL-RAMIREZ, José-Luis et al. Effect of nest relocation on the reproductive success of the marine turtle Lepidochelys olivacea (Testudinata: Cheloniidae). Rev. biol. trop [online]. 2021, vol.69, n.4, pp.1233-1241. ISSN 0034-7744.


In order to increase the number of sea turtle hatchlings, it is necessary to improve conservation strategies, such as nest incubation in hatchery conditions that counteract the effects of extreme climatic conditions.


To compare five reproductive success parameters (hatching success, eggs with no apparent embryonic development, dead hatchlings, embryonic mortality, and incubation period) of the sea turtle Lepidochelys olivacea.


The incubation of nests was evaluated under two periods of nest relocation, P1 ~28.8 °C (August and September) and P2 ~27.1 °C (October and November), average ambient temperature, under hatchery condition, in 2018 in Guerrero, Mexico.


Significant differences were found in hatching success and embryonic mortality between nest relocation periods (P < 0.001). In P1, lower values of hatching success (77.0 % P1 vs 88.6 % P2) and higher values of embryonic mortality (13.7 % P1 vs 3.3 % P2) were observed compared to those of P2. It’s important pointing that, in the present study, embryonic mortality occurred at a late stage of development, that is, in almost fully developed embryos. No differences were found between periods regarding the parameters eggs with no apparent embryonic development, dead hatchlings and incubation period.


The differences between the environmental conditions during the first period of nest relocation compared to the second period, respectively, seem to affect the hatching success and embryonic mortality of L. olivacea. Therefore, it is important to take action on this issue during this incubation stage to try to improve the incubation of nests under hatchery conditions.

Keywords : sea turtle; reproductive success; nest incubation; hatching success; embryonic mortality.

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