A project of NAMRA_CDU in conjunction with the partners and sponsors detailed below.
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Lost and abandoned fishing gears, including “ghost nets”, pose a major threat to marine animals when they become entangled in the gear and drown or die of exhaustion or starvation. The Arafura Timor Seas (ATS) is a region with exceptionally high levels of mortality of sea turtles due to entanglement ghost nets. Six sea turtle species nest in and migrate through the ATS and some populations are already heavily depleted and on the brink of becoming extinct.
This project aims to determine the geographic origin of the entangled turtles. Satellite tracking of turtles within the ATS region helps to identify their migration pathways. Along with data on the movement of known or simulated ghost nets, this information will be used to identify hotspots for ghost net-turtle interactions. This knowledge will contribute to management focused on reducing detrimental impacts on sea turtle populations in this region.