Margaret Lamont, Ph.D.
Ph.D., Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, University of Florida, 2002
M.S., Marine Science, California State University, Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, 1995
B.S., The College of New Jersey, 1991
Meg Lamont is a research biologist focusing on population-level studies of marine turtles in the Gulf of Mexico. She leads several research projects based primarily in the northern Gulf and partners with various agencies including the Department of Defense, US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Florida Department of Transportation. Her work includes investigations of turtle ecology on the nesting beach and within in-water aggregations of primarily loggerhead, green and Kemps ridley turtles.
Science and Products
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) uses trawling to capture and relocate live sea turtles away from dredging locations to minimize the risk of turtle entrainment. These incidental turtle captures provide a unique opportunity to fill critical data gaps for difficult to capture life-stages of marine turtles.
Distribution and Density of Sea Turtles in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM): Gulf of Mexico Marine Assessment Program for Protected Species (GoMMAPPS)
The over-arching goal of GoMMAPPS is to collect broad-scale survey data for seabirds, marine mammals and sea turtles to determine distribution and abundance in the Gulf of Mexico.
The Northwestern Atlantic population of loggerhead sea turtles is one of the largest in the world. Genetic studies have divided this population into 5 management units including a genetically distinct group that nests throughout the northern Gulf of Mexico (GoM).
Characterization of the juvenile green turtle (Chelonia mydas) microbiome throughout an ontogenetic shift from pelagic to neritic habitats
The gut microbiome of herbivorous animals consists of organisms that efficiently digest the structural carbohydrates of ingested plant material. Green turtles (Chelonia mydas) provide an interesting model of change in these microbial communities because they undergo a pronounced shift from a surface-pelagic distribution and omnivorous diet to a...Price, James T.; Paladino, Frank V.; Lamont, Margaret M.; Witherington, Blair E.; Bates, Scott T.; Soule, Tanya
Ecological regime shift drives declining growth rates of sea turtles throughout the West Atlantic
Somatic growth is an integrated, individual-based response to environmental conditions, especially in ectotherms. Growth dynamics of large, mobile animals are particularly useful as bio-indicators of environmental change at regional scales. We assembled growth rate data from throughout the West Atlantic for green turtles, Chelonia mydas, which are...Bjorndal, Karen A.; Bolten, Alan B.; Chaloupka, Milani; Saba, Vincent S.; Bellini, Cláudio; Marcovaldi, Maria A.G.; Santos, Armando J.B.; Bortolon, Luis Felipe Wurdig; Meylan, Anne B.; Meylan, Peter A.; Gray, Jennifer; Hardy, Robert; Brost, Beth; Bresette, Michael; Gorham, Jonathan C.; Connett, Stephen; Crouchley, Barbara Van Sciver; Dawson, Mike; Hayes, Deborah; Diez, Carlos E.; van Dam, Robert P.; Willis, Sue; Nava, Mabel; Hart, Kristen M.; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Crowder, Andrew; Pollock, Clayton; Hillis-Starr, Zandy; Muñoz Tenería, Fernando A.; Herrera-Pavón, Roberto; Labrada-Martagón, Vanessa; Lorences, Armando; Negrete-Philippe, Ana; Lamont, Margaret M.; Foley, Allen M.; Bailey, Rhonda; Carthy, Raymond R.; Scarpino, Russell; McMichael, Erin; Provancha, Jane A.; Brooks, Annabelle; Jardim, Adriana; López-Mendilaharsu, Milagros; González-Paredes, Daniel; Estrades, Andrés; Fallabrino, Alejandro; Martínez-Souza, Gustavo; Vélez-Rubio, Gabriela M.; Boulon, Ralf H.; Collazo, Jaime; Wershoven, Robert; Hernández, Vicente Guzmán; Stringell, Thomas B.; Sanghera, Amdeep; Richardson, Peter B.; Broderick, Annette C.; Phillips, Quinton; Calosso, Marta C.; Claydon, John A.B.; Metz, Tasha L.; Gordon, Amanda L.; Landry, Andre M.; Shaver, Donna J.; Blumenthal, Janice; Collyer, Lucy; Godley, Brendan J.; McGowan, Andrew; Witt, Matthew J.; Campbell, Cathi L.; Lagueux, Cynthia J.; Bethel, Thomas L.; Kenyon, Lory
Biomarkers reveal sea turtles remained in oiled areas following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill
Assessments of large-scale disasters, such as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, are problematic because while measurements of post-disturbance conditions are common, measurements of pre-disturbance baselines are only rarely available. Without adequate observations of pre-disaster organismal and environmental conditions, it is impossible to assess...Vander Zanden, Hannah B.; Bolten, Alan B.; Tucker, Anton D.; Hart, Kristen M.; Lamont, Margaret M.; Fujisaki, Ikuko; Reich, Kimberly J.; Addison, David S.; Mansfield, Katherine L.; Phillips, Katrina F.; Pajuelo, Mariela; Bjorndal, Karen A.
Head-started Kemp’s ridley turtle (Lepidochelys kempii) nest recorded in Florida: Possible implications
A head-started Kemp’s ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys kempii) was documented nesting on South Walton Beach, Florida on 25 May 2015. This record supports the possibility that exposure to Florida waters after being held in captivity through 1–3 yrs of age during the head-starting process may have influenced future nest site selection of...Shaver, Donna J.; Lamont, Margaret M.; Maxwell, Sharon; Walker, Jennifer Shelby; Dillingham, Ted
The effects of large beach debris on nesting sea turtles
A field experiment was conducted to understand the effects of large beach debris on sea turtle nesting behavior as well as the effectiveness of large debris removal for habitat restoration. Large natural and anthropogenic debris were removed from one of three sections of a sea turtle nesting beach and distributions of nests and false crawls (non-...Fujisaki, Ikuko; Lamont, Margaret M.
Home range and habitat use of juvenile green turtles (Chelonia mydas) in the northern Gulf of Mexico
Background: For imperiled marine turtles, use of satellite telemetry has proven to be an effective method in determining long distance movements. However, the large size of the tag, relatively high cost and low spatial resolution of this method make it more difficult to examine fine-scale movements of individuals, particularly at foraging grounds...Lamont, Margaret M.; Fujisaki, Ikuko; Stephens, Brail S.; Hackett, Caitlin
Spatial requirements of different life-stages of the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) from a distinct population segment in the northern Gulf of Mexico
Many marine species have complex life histories that involve disparate developmental, foraging and reproductive habitats and a holistic assessment of the spatial requirements for different life stages is a challenge that greatly complicates their management. Here, we combined data from oceanographic modeling, nesting surveys, and satellite...Lamont, Margaret M.; Putman, Nathan F.; Fujisaki, Ikuko; Hart, Kristen M.
Determining origin in a migratory marine vertebrate: a novel method to integrate stable isotopes and satellite tracking
Stable isotope analysis is a useful tool to track animal movements in both terrestrial and marine environments. These intrinsic markers are assimilated through the diet and may exhibit spatial gradients as a result of biogeochemical processes at the base of the food web. In the marine environment, maps to predict the spatial distribution of stable...Vander Zanden, Hannah B.; Tucker, Anton D.; Hart, Kristen M.; Lamont, Margaret M.; Fujisaki, Ikuko; Addison, David S.; Mansfield, Katherine L.; Phillips, Katrina F.; Wunder, Michael B.; Bowen, Gabriel J.; Pajuelo, Mariela; Bolten, Alan B.; Bjorndal, Karen A.
Winter diets of immature green turtles (Chelonia mydas) on a northern feeding ground: integrating stomach contents and stable isotope analyses
The foraging ecology and diet of the green turtle, Chelonia mydas, remain understudied, particularly in peripheral areas of its distribution. We assessed the diet of an aggregation of juvenile green turtles at the northern edge of its range during winter months using two approaches. Stomach content analyses provide a single time sample, and...Williams, Natalie C.; Bjorndal, Karen A.; Lamont, Margaret M.; Carthy, Raymond R.
Migration, foraging, and residency patterns for Northern Gulf loggerheads: implications of local threats and international movements
Northern Gulf of Mexico (NGoM) loggerheads (Caretta caretta) make up one of the smallest subpopulations of this threatened species and have declining nest numbers. We used satellite telemetry and a switching state-space model to identify distinct foraging areas used by 59 NGoM loggerheads tagged during 2010–2013. We tagged turtles after...Hart, Kristen M.; Lamont, Margaret M.; Sartain-Iverson, Autumn R.; Fujisaki, Ikuko
Spatial distribution of loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) emergences along a highly dynamic beach in the northern Gulf of Mexico
As coastlines change due to sea level rise and an increasing human presence, understanding how species, such as marine turtles, respond to alterations in habitat is necessary for proper management and conservation. Survey data from a major nesting beach in the northern Gulf of Mexico, where a revetment was installed, was used to assess spatial...Lamont, Margaret M.; Houser, Chris
Temporal, spatial, and body size effects on growth rates of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) in the Northwest Atlantic
In response to a call from the US National Research Council for research programs to combine their data to improve sea turtle population assessments, we analyzed somatic growth data for Northwest Atlantic (NWA) loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) from 10 research programs. We assessed growth dynamics over wide ranges of geography (9–33°N...Bjorndal, Karen A.; Schroeder, Barbara A.; Foley, Allen M.; Witherington, Blair E.; Bresette, Michael; Clark, David; Herren, Richard M.; Arendt, Michael D.; Schmid, Jeffrey R.; Meylan, Anne B.; Meylan, Peter A.; Provancha, Jane A.; Hart, Kristen M.; Lamont, Margaret M.; Carthy, Raymond R.; Bolten, Alan B.