Call for Abstracts

Program Chair: Stacy Hargrove –


The Program Committee will select from abstracts submitted in the following seven session topics. 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.

This session will include talks related to reducing threats to sea turtles and enhancing population recovery, including bycatch reduction, restoration science in the Gulf of Mexico, health and disease research or mortality investigations not covered in other sessions, and population assessments, including genetics. Research that provides information that can be used to reduce threats, determine the status of a population, or monitor/understand threats will also be considered.    

This session highlights research on the current and future potential impacts of a warming planet and rising seas on both sea turtles and sea turtle habitats at all life stages from egg to adult.  A focus on effects that will be relevant to populations in the southeastern United States is preferred.

This session highlights research on impacts from hard structures such as coastal armoring and breakwaters or from sand placement via beach nourishment, sand bypassing, and dune restoration on marine turtle nesting, reproductive success, and resiliency of the nesting beach.

This session highlights effects from contaminant exposure, including inorganic and organic contaminants, natural biotoxins, and plastics, in addition to effects on health and reproduction in marine turtles and model organisms. A focus on animals sampled in the southeastern United States is preferred. Studies that document baseline concentrations of new and emerging contaminants will also be considered.

This session highlights research on populations of sea turtles in oceanic, coastal, or other foraging habitats; topics may include abundance assessments, in-water mortality rates and sources, growth data, tracking, and identification of foraging and developmental habitats.

This session highlights quantitative nesting beach research, including nest surveys, internesting period, remigration intervals, connectivity of nesting grounds to foraging habitats, clutch size, hatching and emerging success, hatchling production, phenology of nesting in the southeast U.S.

The Behavior and Ecology session will include development of behavior, orientation and navigation, migration, male vs. female ecology and behavior, mating systems, normal and abnormal behavior, molecular ecology, predator-prey interactions and predation, niches, behavioral ecology, resilience, developmental ecology, ecosytems and communities, trophic interactions, and population modeling. Other related topics will be considered.

This special session will highlight student-submitted research from the above-listed seven session areas.  Student abstracts for this session will be selected by the program committee to be highlighted; abstracts are NOT submitted directly to this session.  Selection for this special session will have no bearing on whether students are considered for the Boyd Lyon Student Awards.  Students interested in being considered for the Boyd Lyon Student Awards or for this Special Session should be certain to check the “Student” box of the registration form.


  • 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 a confirmation email with a link and instructions on how to submit an abstract. You will need your meeting confirmation number in order to submit.
  • 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 SE 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 SERSTM2018 Ex Ordo 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 OCTOBER 15, 2017. 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 2018 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 2hrs 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 hard working, 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. Please address all questions to the Program Chair at


Submitting your abstract first requires registering for the meeting. After registering, you will get a confirmation email with a link to the Ex Ordo site to submit your abstract. Once there, you will need to set up an account and enter your meeting confirmation number to access the abstract submission site. Once in, just follow the order of the boxes down the left side.

  • 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!

You will receive a confirmation email letting you know that we have received your abstract. In this email there are instructions for editing your submission before the October 15th deadline. No submissions or edits will take place after that date.

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 November 10, 2017. 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 cancelling in advance of the meeting will not be allowed to present in subsequent meetings.


Requirements, Guidelines and Suggestions for Poster Preparation for the

2018 Southeast Regional Sea Turtle Meeting

 Please direct questions to the Program Committee at

There are scheduled poster sessions on on Wednesday evening from 5:15 P.M. – 6:45 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.