A Proposal to Standardize Data Collection
and Implications for Management
of the Wood Turtle, Clemmys insulpta,
and other Freshwater Turtles in Ontario, Canada


Department of Zoology, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1 Canada

        ABSTRACT:  Long-term research is currently underway in Ontario to document the population and conservation biology of five species of freshwater turtles:  the common snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina), the painted turtle (Chrysemys picta), the spotted turtle (Clemmys guttata), the wood turtle (Clemmys insculpta), and the musk turtle (Sternotherus odoratus).  Data on population density, demography, and reproductive success are being collected.  Turtles were equipped with temperature-sensing radio transmitters and tracked to gain information on habitat selection, home range size and utilization, and characteristics of nesting and hibernating sites.
        To build a valuable and accessible database for these and other declining species in Canada, we propose standardized measures of body size, population density, habitat use and characteristics, and reproductive output.  Data are presented for one population of wood turtles in Ontario, and the implications that these data have for management of threatened populations of turtles are discussed.

  Demography, Ecology, and Genetics

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