Investigating hawksbill turtle migratory paths and foraging grounds as strongholds or targets driving critical population declines
Given the importance of northern Queensland as a multi-stock hawksbill turtle foraging ‘sink’, further policy protection and management mitigation is urgently needed to reverse the declining trajectory of the neQld stock and PNG population, and to ensure Queensland waters remain a stronghold for these and other western Pacific Ocean hawksbill populations (e.g. Solomon Islands and Vanuatu). This new research highlighted the need for urgent and prioritised action to assess and manage many western Pacific Ocean hawksbill populations, resulting in the development (and endorsement) of a Convention of Migratory Species Single Species Action Plan (Chapter 7). This thesis provides new insight into hawksbill ecology and movement, and has identified critical policy and management interventions required to effectively secure hawksbill turtle populations in NE Australia and PNG before their populations are likely to become extinct.