Theses and Dissertations

Copyright Statement

All rights reserved. This publication is intended for use solely by faculty, students, and staff of Nova Southeastern University. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, now known or later developed, including but not limited to photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the author or the publisher.

Defense Date

1996

Document Type

Thesis - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

M.S. Marine Biology

Second Degree Name

M.S. Coastal Zone Management

Department

Oceanographic Center

First Advisor

Curtis Burney

Second Advisor

Richard Dodge

Third Advisor

Lou Fisher

Abstract

The distribution and abundance of ghost crab (Ocypode quadrata) burrows on Hillsboro Beach, Florida, and their relationship to, and effect on sea turtle nests were documented at three control sites and three experimental sites from April 1994 through October 1994. The three experimental sites were located immediately to the east of three open beach sea turtle hatcheries and the control sites were established on nearby open beaches.

The purpose of this work was 1) to determine if a larger population of O. quadrata occurred near sea turtle hatcheries than elsewhere along Hillsboro Beach and 2) to assess possible impacts of O. quadrata infestation on turtle hatchling emergence success.

O. quadrata abundance was not significantly different at the experimental and control areas. Within the hatcheries, ghost crabs did invade sea turtle nests both before and after hatching. The emergence success of nests invaded prior to hatching was significantly lower than for non-invaded nests. Ghost crab predation appeared to significantly increase the percentages of unhatched eggs, but did not significantly change the percentages of pipped eggs or dead-in-nest hatchlings, relative to uninvaded nests.

Files over 10MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "Save as..."

To access this thesis/dissertation you must have a valid nova.edu OR mynsu.nova.edu email address and create an account for NSUWorks.

Free My Thesis

If you are the author of this work and would like to grant permission to make it openly accessible to all, please click the Free My Thesis button.

Share

COinS