Call for Abstracts

Program Chair: Christopher Marshall, Ph.D

Poster Co-Chairs: Karen Holloway-Adkins, Ph.D.  &  Shanon Gann


The Abstract Deadline has been extended to November 19, 2022 at midnight CST!!


If you would like to submit an abstract but are unable to register due to employer administrative limitations, please contact ASAP and we will work with you on a solution.

The Program Committee will select from abstracts submitted in the following session topics outlined below. If your abstract does not fit into one of the topics listed below, please contact the program chair prior to submitting your abstract. Space for oral presentations is limited. All abstracts will be critically reviewed by the Program Committee, and high-quality abstracts will receive priority for oral presentation. Poster presentations are encouraged and authors must be present at their posters during designated times to answer questions and discuss their work.


Climate Change. This session will highlight regional studies ranging on a wide breadth of climate change issues including global warming, increasing beach temperatures, sea level rise, drastic changes in weather, such as historic cold stunning events, and beach restoration.

Special Session: Historic Cold Stunning Event 2021. This session will focus on impacts from the historic cold stunning events of 2021 including preparation for future cold stunning events, identifying stranding network needs, identifying and highlighting Federal resources (i.e., NOAA and USFWS), physiological impacts of cold stunning, medical and treatment of cold-stunned sea turtles, modeling and prediction of cold stun events, and summaries of cold stun stranding and rehabilitation efforts.

Sea Turtle Science, Recovery and Conservation in the North Gulf of Mexico. The latest work on recovering sea turtle populations in the northern Gulf of Mexico and the importance of non-government organizations and volunteer groups in sea turtle conservation.

Education and Outreach. A focus on the impact, needs, and trends of sea turtle educational outreach programs.

Research Priorities for Management of Cold-Stun, Red Tide, and COVID-19 events. An assessment of research needed to manage future specific events related to climate change.

Sea Turtles of the U.S. Virgin Islands and Caribbean. An update on the state of sea turtles from this region of the world.

Coastal Restoration and Related Ecosystems and Species. A focus on sea turtle related ecosystems, restored ecosystems (dune restoration) and the assemblage of species (e.g., beach mice) that influence sea turtle nesting habitat. 

Genetics. The latest information regarding genetics of sea turtles in the S.E.U.S. including  green sea turtles of the western Gulf of Mexico, Kemp’s ridleys, and changing sex ratios.

Atlantic Coast Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtles. A summary of increasing trends in nesting, population size and habitat use on the Atlantic coast.

Microplastics. Recent developments to assess the impact of microplastic pollution in its broadest sense from beach and in-water habitats to microplastics found in necropsies and washback hatchlings.

Natural History and Biology of S.E.U.S. Sea Turtles. The latest research on many aspects of sea turtle biology in the region.

Health, Disease, and Rehabilitation.  Innovation, trends, and updates on sea turtle rehabilitation, and health issues facing sea turtles in the region.

Leatherback Conservation. Updates on science and conservation of leatherback sea turtles in the southeast U.S.

Trophic Ecology using Stable Isotopes. This session will focus on the trophic ecology and the latest technological methods for quantifying foraging behavior in sea turtles.



  • There is a limit of two abstracts (one oral and one poster abstract or two poster abstracts) per lead author.
  • The lead author must also be the presenter.
  • You must be in attendance to present.
  • You must be registered and registration fees must be paid before an abstract can be submitted. After you have registered, you will receive the link to the abstract submission page on the website.
  • Regardless of where the lead author resides, all abstracts must pertain to sea turtles in the water or on the beaches of states in the southeastern U.S. (Virginia to Texas and Southeast US Territories). 
  • Oral presentations will be 12 minutes with 3 additional minutes for questions.
  • All abstracts for oral or poster presentations must be submitted online through the SERSTM website. 
    • Abstracts should be submitted in English in the space provided and have a maximum of 300 words.
    • No attachments, please.
    • Please note that upon abstract submission, you must choose the most appropriate session for your abstract based on the session titles and descriptions provided above. If your abstract does not fit with one of the topics listed as a session, please contact the program chair prior to submitting your abstract, as other submissions may be accepted. 
    • Include as much information as possible so that the committee can make informed choices about which abstracts to accept.
    • Abstracts will also be included (as submitted) in an online proceedings.
  • Deadline for submission of abstracts is NOVEMBER 5, 2022, at midnight CST. No abstracts can be accepted after this date. Edits to previously submitted abstracts can be made until that date. We urge you not to wait until the last day to submit, as unexpected problems can arise during the submission process.
  • There are often more requests for oral presentations than time allows. Your submitted abstract may be selected, but due to limited availability for oral presentations, you may be asked if you would be willing to present a poster instead.
  • Oral presentations should be formatted for MS PowerPoint. If anything else is needed, please contact the Program Chairs.
  • Students will have the option to be considered for the Boyd Lyon Student Award. Awards will be given for first place and runner up in the oral and poster categories. Please note that for the 2022 meeting, and as a reflection of Boyd’s giving spirit , students who wish to be considered for the Boyd Lyon Student Award will be required to contribute  a minimum of 4 hrs of their time to assist with loading/running presentations during the meeting, or assisting in other ways.

    Boyd Lyon exhibited the qualities that make a good graduate student and a good researcher. He was hardworking, dedicated, well-read and committed to learning as much about sea turtles as possible. He strove for excellence in everything that he did. Although he is missed on a daily basis, his legacy lives on in his friends and in the research carried on in his name (see more at the Boyd Lyon Sea Turtle Fund). It is with this in mind that we honor him by giving the Boyd Lyon Award for Excellence for best student papers and best student posters.

    If you are unable to attend in person, SERSTM is willing to consider limited submissions for virtual oral presentations on a case-by-case basis. Please submit an explanation of your need to present virtually to Approval of virtual presentations will be at the discretion of the Program Chair and SERSTN Board of Directors. Virtual oral presentations will be live-cast in the appropriate session at the meeting and will not be available for online viewing.


Submitting your abstract first requires registering for the meeting. After registering, you will receive a link for submission through the website.  Please review the GUIDELINES FOR SUBMITTING, then click “Skip” to go to the next page to begin. 

    • Select the TYPE OF PRESENTATION you are requesting (prefer oral, prefer poster, no preference). Click “Done” to go to the next page.
    • Copy and Paste, or type, your TITLE and ABSTRACT in the boxes provided. Click “Done”.
    • Add AUTHORS and AFFILIATIONS (lead author must be the presenter) in the order you want them to appear in the program and online proceedings. You will need your co-author’s email addresses as they are also notified. Please ensure you have the permission of all co-authors before including them in your authorship list. Click “Done”.
    • Topics are our Sessions. Choose the TOPIC / SESSION you want your abstract submitted under and click “Done”.
    • Designate whether or not your abstract qualifies for the BOYD LYON AWARD (must be a student presenting his/her own work). Recently graduated presenters (within 8 months of graduation) who are presenting work done as students are also eligible. Choose “YES” or “NO”, and click “Done”. You’re finished!

Please Note: Government employees or others unable to register due to employer administrative or payment limitations, please contact and we will work with you on a solution.


The Program Committee will make final decisions on abstract acceptance.  All authors will be notified via email of the acceptance of their oral or poster presentation by December 17, 2022. If you need an acceptance letter sent to someone other than yourself, please specify this in your abstract submission.

Should your abstract be accepted for presentation as a poster, please review our suggested Guidelines for Poster Preparation.

If for some reason you need to cancel your presentation, please inform the Program Chair ( immediately. Those who fail to present their papers or posters without canceling in advance of the meeting will not be allowed to present in subsequent meetings.

Requirements, Guidelines, and Suggestions for Poster Preparation for the
Southeast Regional Sea Turtle Meeting

 Please direct questions to the Program Committee at

There are scheduled poster sessions on Wednesday evening from 5:30 P.M. – 7:15 P.M. to give the audience a chance to meet poster authors. Please plan to be with your poster during that time. Students who are being considered for the Boyd Lyon Award must be at their poster during the poster session to meet judges and answer questions.
Size: The maximum area available for each poster will be 4′ x 4′ (122cm x 122cm). There will not be space for an oversized poster. Therefore, posters that are larger than 4 feet wide will be altered (folded or cut) to fit within the allotted area! It is always a good idea to bring 8½” x 11” pages of your poster that people can take with them.
Language: All poster text should be in English.
Student awards: A student who has entered a poster in the awards competition must be the first author on the poster, presenting his/her own work.
Title: The title of the poster should be short but descriptive. Font size should be sufficient that it can be read from 10 feet (3m). 72 point is suggested.
Text size: The main text of the poster should be in a font large enough to be read from 3 feet (1m). A font size between 18 and 24 point (6-8mm) is recommended; secondary text (such as acknowledgements and literature cited) may be slightly smaller but no text should ever be smaller than 14 point (5mm).
Figures: Posters should include figures that illustrate key methods, findings or examples from the study. All text within figures, graphs, charts and tables should be large enough to be read from 3 feet (1m). Use graphs or charts instead of tables whenever possible to make your data easier to “get” at a glance. Remember to use standard deviation/error bars in your graphs and scale bars in your photographs/micrographs. Use arrows to draw attention to specific details in images.
Less is more: Posters that contain a small amount of text and many figures are more likely to be read than posters that have more text and fewer figures. As with a short oral presentation, a poster is not meant to report an entire study but to convey the findings and conclusions of a study and just enough information for the reader to understand the reason for the study and the methods used.
Topic: Stick to only one idea/topic in your poster. Including too much information not directly related to your central idea often confuses and frustrates readers.
Write your poster for a general audience. Remember that people from many different backgrounds will attend the meeting. Your goal is to create a presentation that anyone can “get” in less than 5 minutes and one that someone with a basic background in your subject matter can fully understand in less than 10 minutes. It is suggested to have paper sized (8½” x 11”) handouts of your poster that people can take with them. Your contact information should be on these handouts.
Organization: Organize your poster into sections and arrange those sections so that it is easy to follow the “flow” of your presentation. If you refer to figures, make it easy to find those figures and return to the starting point in the text quickly.