Study

Overwintering of gopher tortoises (Gopherus polyphemus) translocated to the northern limit of their geographic range: temperatures, timing, and survival

  • Published source details Degregorio B.A., Buhlmann K.A. & Tuberville T.D. (2012) Overwintering of gopher tortoises (Gopherus polyphemus) translocated to the northern limit of their geographic range: temperatures, timing, and survival. Chelonian Conservation and Biology, 11, 84-90.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Translocate reptiles away from threats: Tortoises, terrapins, side-necked & softshell turtles

Action Link
Reptile Conservation
  1. Translocate reptiles away from threats: Tortoises, terrapins, side-necked & softshell turtles

    A study in 2001–2005 in a site of mixed forest in South Carolina, USA (DeGregorio et al. 2012) found that translocating gopher tortoises Gopherus polyphemus away from a development site to the northerly part of their range resulted in most tortoises surviving the overwinter period. Of 21 tortoises fitted with temperature loggers, all survived the overwintering period. Two tortoises (both immature individuals) that were not fitted with loggers died during the overwintering period. In August–October 2001, a total of 106 tortoises (39 adults, 32 juveniles, 35 hatchlings) were collected from an industrial development site and translocated to an area where they were historically abundant but were absent at the time of translocation. A prescribed burn took place every three years in the release area, with the most recent in spring 2001. Tortoises were released in October 2001 or spring 2002. Twenty-one tortoises were fitted with temperature loggers, which monitored tortoise temperatures during the winters of 2002–2003 and 2004–2005.

    (Summarised by: William Morgan)

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