100,000 - 1,000,000 individuals
Comments: Total population is perhaps 100,000 adult females (extrapolated from Dodd 1988). Aerial beach surveys indicated that about 14,150 females nested in the southeastern U.S. in 1983 (CSTC 1990). More recent estimates are similar. An estimated 50,000 to 70,000 clutches are deposited each year in the southeastern United States (Meylan et al. 1995). An estimated minimum of 2200-11,000 individuals occur in summer in waters off the northeastern U.S. (Shoop and Kenney 1992).
At least five different subpopulations have been identified in the western North Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, with nesting abundance as follows (see NMFS 2002): (1) A Northern nesting subpopulation, occurring from North Carolina to northeast Florida at about 29 degrees N (about 7,500 nests in 1998); (2) a South Florida nesting subpopulation, occurring from 29 degrees N on the east coast to Sarasota on the west coast (approximately 83,400 nests in 1998); (3) a Florida Panhandle nesting subpopulation, occurring at Eglin Air Force Base and the beaches near Panama City, Florida (approximately 1,200 nests in 1998); (4) a Yucatan nesting subpopulation, occurring on the eastern Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico (approximately 1,000 nests in 1998); and (5) a Dry Tortugas nesting subpopulation, occurring in the islands of the Dry Tortugas, near Key West, Florida (approximately 200 nests per year) (see NMFS 2002).
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