Using growth rates to estimate age of the sea turtle barnacle Chelonibia testudinaria

@article{Doell2017UsingGR,
  title={Using growth rates to estimate age of the sea turtle barnacle Chelonibia testudinaria},
  author={Sophie A. Doell and Rod M. Connolly and Colin James Limpus and Ryan M. Pearson and Jason P. van de Merwe},
  journal={Marine Biology},
  year={2017},
  volume={164},
  pages={1-7}
}
Epibionts can serve as valuable ecological indicators, providing information about the behaviour or health of the host. The use of epibionts as indicators is, however, often limited by a lack of knowledge about the basic ecology of these ‘hitchhikers’. This study investigated the growth rates of a turtle barnacle, Chelonibia testudinaria, under natural conditions, and then used the resulting growth curve to estimate the barnacle’s age. Repeat morphometric measurements (length and basal area) on… 

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It is paradoxical that the flexibility of barnacles for multiple host species contrasts with their overall strict specificity for sea turtles, with each symbiont occupying a virtually unique suite of turtle hosts.

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A novel method is used that combines barnacle growth rates and stable isotope analysis of barnacle shells (δ18O and δ13C) as predictors of home area for foraging sea turtles based on isotope ratios from the shells of the barnacles that were attached to them.

Stable isotopes and epibiont communities reveal foraging habitats of nesting loggerhead turtles in the South West Indian Ocean

TLDR
The complementary evidence from isotope and epibiont data thus indicates that nesting loggerheads of this population exhibit a bimodal foraging strategy and shows the value of using a combination of stable isotopes and epIBiont communities as cost-effective tools to derive information on habitat-use patterns of migratory species.

Global oxygen isoscapes for barnacle shells: Application for tracing movement in oceans.

S0025315420001198jrv 1299..1309

  • 2021

Evidence for Host Selectivity and Specialization by Epizoic Chelonibia Barnacles Between Hawksbill and Green Sea Turtles

TLDR
A case of apparent host specificity between two barnacles that are epizoites of sea turtles is investigated and the hypothesis that the larvae of these barnacles differentially select host species from a shared supply is supported.

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