Tracking Captain Jack


Release Date: 1-22-2014
Transmitter Type: Wildlife Computers Splash 10AF-296A
Data Collected: GPS Location, Water Temperature and Behavior Information
Expected Lifespan of Tag: 1 year depending on battery life

captain-jackDistance From Juno Beach:  Straight distance =  339 km,
Distance Traveled = 2,126 km
Current Water Temperature: 86.2º F
Nearest City:  Dredgers Key (65 km from Key West)
Recent Coordinates: Latitude: 24.712000,
Longitude: -82.427002

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Click map above for more details.

Final Update 9/15/2014:
Captain Jack’s satellite transmitter sent it’s last good location point to LMC researchers on August 14, 2014. Although we are still receiving a handful of communications from the tag, the locations are not very accurate. There are a few possible explanations for this. One, the tag’s antenna could be damaged, likely a result of the reef habitat. Another explanation for the loss in communication could be algal growth on the tag, not allowing transmission of information to the satellites. If we receive a future transmission, we will be sure to update this page.

After being released in January, Captain Jack transmitted GPS location, water temperature, and behavioral information for a total of 204 days.  LMC’s biologists are very happy with the data received as it showed Captain Jack was acting like a normal, healthy sub-adult loggerhead turtle after release. Captain Jack’s last transmission was from between the Marquesas and the Dry Tortugas, a foraging ground that the turtle has been at since late April. We wish Captain Jack all the best!

Captain Jack has been transmitting for 180 days! This gives LMC biologists the chance to learn a lot about loggerhead sea turtle behavior. For instance, a quick glance at the data indicates that Captain Jack is consistently making dives about 20m deep. Captain Jack has clearly found suitable foraging habitat between the Marquesas and the Dry Tortugas as he/she continues to stay in the same area.

Captain Jack has been hanging around between the Marquesas and the Dry Tortugas for over a month now. We believe he has found a suitable foraging ground and may remain in the same general area for a while. There are many sea turtle tracking programs on and when looking up other programs, we came across the Dry Tortugas Research Program run by USGS. One of their currently transmitting turtles is an adult loggerhead named “Priscilla”. She was captured, tagged and released in the Keys in May 2012 and has remained in the same general area since. Priscilla and Captain Jack are right next to each other which likely indicates that there is good loggerhead sea turtle habitat and foraging in that area. We look forward to keeping an eye on Captain Jack (and his new friend Priscilla).

Priscilla’s map

After spending a couple of weeks on the reefs off of Key Largo, Captain Jack has moved a little further south. Captain Jack is just off of Marathon Key now, about 6.5 miles from our friends at the Marathon Sea Turtle Hospital!

Captain Jack has hit the Florida keys! Captain Jack is still traveling south and is just off of Key Largo, hanging out in the warm coastal waters. Loggerhead sea turtles are known to show site fidelity to their foraging grounds. This means that the turtles return to the same areas to feed after they have left the nesting beach. LMC biologists are excited to see where Captain Jack calls “home” while not at the nesting beaches of Juno Beach, Florida.

Captain Jack is on the move again! After spending 12 days near Delray beach, Captain Jack swam further south to approximately 5.5 miles south of Ft. Lauderdale beach. The ARGOS satellites place Captain Jack about 3 miles from the shore, which is typical habitat for loggerhead turtles.

It appears as though Captain Jack has finally made up his/her mind and is headed south. In the past week, Captain Jack has moved approximately 12 miles south along the coast and is currently just south of Delray Beach.

In the past week, Captain Jack has been slowly swimming south, keeping close to shore. Captain Jack is currently approximately 5 miles off of Lantana Beach.

After being released, Captain Jack swam approximately 15 miles north along the coast. Around Corset Island, Captain Jack turned around and moved south. It appears as though Captain Jack may have spent a day in the Lake Worth Lagoon, south of Peanut Island before heading back north. Captain Jack is currently approximately 3 miles off of Jupiter-Carlin Beach.

Before being released, Captain Jack was outfitted with a satellite tag. This tag will allow the LMC biologists to track the turtle’s movements. The data collected during Captain Jack’s journey will be transmitted back to us via ARGOS Satellites when the turtle surfaces to breathe. These data are displayed on the map above. The color code legend above the map correlates to the number of days the tag has been active.

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