An international team of our colleagues are currently working on an update to the Red List assessments for green turtles (Chelonia mydas) globally and for all subpopulations*. Over the coming weeks, we will be making them available for MTSG member comment as drafts are finished.
The first, which is available for download here, is the first-ever Red List assessment of the South Atlantic Ocean subpopulation, performed by Annette Broderick and Rita Patricio.
We kindly request your review and constructive comments on the methods and data used to evaluate the Red List criteria for the South Atlantic Ocean subpopulation.
Please return comments to me (firstname.lastname@example.org) with copy to Annette (email@example.com), Rita (firstname.lastname@example.org), and Paolo Casale (email@example.com) by Friday, September 23rd.
Thank you in advance for your thoughtful reviews and comments, and to Annette and Rita for significant effort working with colleagues from throughout the South Atlantic region to compile, synthesize, and analyze valuable data.
If anyone has any general Red List questions, please direct them to me.
All the best,
*A note about green turtle subpopulations: When we first started the green turtle assessments well over a year ago, the group discussed updating the regional management units (RMUs; Wallace et al. 2010) that would be used as IUCN subpopulations. We decided to adopt the distinct population segments (DPSs) defined under the USA Endangered Species Act assessment (Seminoff et al. 2015). To be clear, we are not adopting anything about US policy to reflect MTSG definitions or processes, but rather the DPSs were defined with up-to-date data (e.g., genetics, tag returns) that illustrated high overlap in certain regions (South Atlantic, East Indian-West Pacific) that justified combining several previously defined RMUs (n=17) into fewer, larger DPSs (n=11). This approach followed the process prescribed by the MTSG Burning Issues Working Group, i.e., that Red List assessments and the assessors themselves should revisit RMUs, and, if needed, should suggest changes. Here is a link the green turtle ESA doc so you can see the DPSs, and now subpopulations, and how they were defined.