From the cradle to the grave: Green turtle hatchlings (Chelonia mydas) preyed upon by two-spots red snappers (Lutjanus bohar)

Type Article
Date 2019-12
Language English
Author(s) Juhel Jean-Baptiste6, Maire Eva1, 2, 6, Sucré Elliott3, 6, Cheutin Marie-Charlotte7, Marques Virginie6, Benkwitt Cassandra2, Gunn Rachel L.2, Richards Eilísh4, Albouy CamilleORCID5
Affiliation(s) 1 : UMR MARBEC, Univ. Montpellier, CNRS, Ifremer, IRD, 34095 Montpellier Cedex 5, France
2 : Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YQ, UK
3 : Centre Universitaire de Mayotte, Route Nationale 3, BP 53, 97660 Dembeni, Mayotte, France
4 : ETH, Universitӓt Zürich, 8092 Zürich, Switzerland
5 : IFREMER, Unité Ecologie et Modèles pour l'Halieutique, EMH, Nantes Cedex 3, France
6 : UMR MARBEC, Univ. Montpellier, CNRS, Ifremer, IRD, 34095 Montpellier Cedex 5, France
7 : UMR MARBEC, Univ. Montpellier, CNRS, Ifremer, IRD, 34095 Montpellier Cedex 5, France
Source Food Webs (2352-2496) (Elsevier BV), 2019-12 , Vol. 21 , P. e001129 (3p.)
DOI 10.1016/j.fooweb.2019.e00129
Keyword(s) Trophic interaction, Marine turtle, Red bass, Snapper, Lutjanids
Abstract

The observation of trophic interactions such as predation provide valuable information to model food webs and better understand ecosystem functioning. Such information is crucial for rare and endangered species in order to adapt management measures and ensure their conservation. However, trophic interactions are rarely observed in the marine realm, even for well-known or widespread species. During a scientific cruise in the Scattered Islands (Southwestern Indian Ocean), we observed endangered green turtle hatchlings (Chelonia mydas) in the gut content of two subadults two-spots red snappers (Lutjanus bohar). This trophic link involving emblematic species has not been previously described. The two-spots red snapper is a widespread coral reef fish in the tropical Indo-Pacific. Although it is unclear how fish predation affects marine turtle population dynamics, the occurrence of hatchlings in all the snapper samples suggests that fish could be significant sources of predation. Yet this predation pressure remains to be further studied and quantified to be considered in marine turtle population monitoring.

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Juhel Jean-Baptiste, Maire Eva, Sucré Elliott, Cheutin Marie-Charlotte, Marques Virginie, Benkwitt Cassandra, Gunn Rachel L., Richards Eilísh, Albouy Camille (2019). From the cradle to the grave: Green turtle hatchlings (Chelonia mydas) preyed upon by two-spots red snappers (Lutjanus bohar). Food Webs, 21, e001129 (3p.). Publisher's official version : https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fooweb.2019.e00129 , Open Access version : https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00589/70160/