Matthew D Ramirez

Matthew D Ramirez
University of Rhode Island | URI · Graduate School of Oceanography

Doctor of Philosophy

About

14
Publications
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104
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Introduction
My research interests broadly encompass the trophic, spatial, and growth dynamics of marine vertebrates, especially protected species. Much of my research centers on the development and application of ecogeochemical tools (isotopes, trace elements) to sequentially deposited animal tissues (bone, teeth) to reconstruct animal ecology. If I don't respond to your paper request quickly please e-mail me directly! You can find my most up to date contact information here: https://www.mdramirez.com

Publications

Publications (14)
Article
Full-text available
Compound‐specific stable isotope analysis of individual amino acids (CSIA‐AA) has emerged as a transformative approach to estimate consumer trophic positions (TPCSIA) that are internally indexed to primary producer nitrogen isotope baselines. Central to accurate TPCSIA estimation is an understanding of beta (β) values—the differences between trophi...
Article
Full-text available
Sea turtles exhibit complex life histories, encompassing intermittent use of multiple spatially separated habitats throughout long lifespans. This broad scope presents challenges for collecting comprehensive biological and ecological data, yet absence of such information complicates evaluation of management strategies for populations at risk of ext...
Article
For species of conservation concern, somatic growth and age at maturation are key parameters in models used to evaluate population dynamics, as spatial and temporal variability in growth rates may be particularly important for predicting population recovery. Following an oceanic juvenile developmental stage, endangered Kemp’s ridley sea turtles Lep...
Article
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Many environmental processes influence animal somatic growth rates. However, elucidating specific drivers of somatic growth variation has been challenging for marine megafauna. Using a 20+ year dataset of somatic growth generated through skeletochronology, we evaluated the relationship between multiple region-wide environmental factors-the Deepwate...
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Reptile growth is influenced by many ecological processes that can cumulatively give rise to divergent somatic growth rates within spatially structured populations. As somatic growth variation can strongly influence a species’ population dynamics, identifying proximate drivers can be critical to the conservation and management of protected species....
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Knowledge of sea turtle demographic rates is central to modeling their population dynamics, but few studies have quantitatively synthesized existing data globally. Here, we used a Bayesian hierarchical model to conduct a meta-analysis of published von Bertalanffy growth curve parameters (growth coefficient, K ; asymptotic length, L ∞ ) for chelonid...
Article
Trace element analysis has emerged as a powerful tool to elucidate past movement and habitat use in aquatic animals, but has been underutilized in studies of non-fish species. When applied to sequentially deposited tissues (e.g. fish otoliths, sea turtle humerus bone), the technique can be used to infer aspects of an individual’s ecology through ti...
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Ontogenetic niche theory predicts that individuals may undergo one or more changes in habitat or diet throughout their lifetime to maintain optimal growth rates, or to optimize trade-offs between mortality risk and growth. We combine skeletochronological and stable nitrogen isotope (δ¹⁵N) analyses of sea turtle humeri (n = 61) to characterize the g...
Article
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Ontogenetic changes in resource use often delimit transitions between life stages. Ecological and individual factors can cause variation in the timing and consistency of these transitions, ultimately affecting community and population dynamics through changes in growth and survival. Therefore, it is important to document and understand behavioral a...
Article
Full-text available
RationaleThe sampling of sequential, annually formed bone growth layers for stable carbon (δ13C values) and nitrogen (δ15N values) isotope analysis (SIA) can provide a time series of foraging ecology data. To date, no standard protocol exists for the pre-SIA treatment of cortical samples taken from fresh, modern, bones.Methods Based on the SIA of h...

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