Abstract

Kemp's ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys kempii) age at first nesting is the age at which an individual female successfully nests for the first time. This commentary recommends determination of the statistical distribution of age at first nesting, estimation of central tendency, and variability of age at first nesting, and application of these estimates in future age-based and life stage–based demographic modeling, as substitutes for parameter estimates based on age at sexual maturity or age at first reproduction. We hope that our commentary will encourage discussion and research on age at first nesting and its application to demographic modeling of the Kemp's ridley population.

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