The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

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pdf 11.Standardising curved carapace length measurements for leatherback turtles, Dermochelys coriacea, to investigate global patterns in body size

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Open Access

pp. 231-234

Authors: Nathan J. Robinson, Kelly R. Stewart, Peter H. Dutton, Ronel Nel, Frank V. Paladino & Pilar Santidrián Tomillo

Abstract: There are two commonly utilised, but distinct, methods for measuring carapace length of leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea). Either the carapace is measured along the central ridge or to the side of the central ridge.
Here, we demonstrate that these two measurements produce differing results. Moreover, we formulate a globally-applicable correction factor to standardise between these two measurements. Standardised curved carapace length measurements from leatherback turtles at nesting sites worldwide generally fit into 3 size categories: small (157.5 cm; Indian: Southwest, Indian: Northeast, and Pacific: West).

Keywords: correction factor, morphology, marine turtles, nesting, Regional Management Units

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