Movement patterns of Blanding's turtles (Emydoidea blandingii) in the suburban landscape of eastern Massachusetts
- Cite this article as:
- Grgurovic, M. & Sievert, P.R. Urban Ecosyst (2005) 8: 203. doi:10.1007/s11252-005-4380-z
We studied Blanding's turtle Emydoideablandingii home range and seasonal movement patterns at 10 sites in suburban eastern Massachusetts during 2001 and 2002. Radio telemetry was used to track 51 turtles (31 females and 20 males) and home range was estimated during 4 seasonal activity periods usingthe 95% fixed kernel estimator. Sex, year, and site were not found to affect home range size due to the large amount of variationbetween and within individuals. There were significant differences in home range length between activity periods, with longest movementsoccurring during the period of 15 April to 31 May as animals moved to ephemeral wetlands. Mean annual home range size for Blanding's turtles was 22 ha, and mean home range length was 856 m. Animals frequently had annual home ranges that overlapped little from year to year, indicating that our calculations greatly underestimate the lifetime home range of an individual. Due to the large area needs of Blanding's turtles, and the diversified ownership of lands in eastern Massachusetts, numerous stakeholders will need to be involved to effectively protect viable populations for the foreseeable future.