Biodiversity & Conservation

, Volume 10, Issue 7, pp 1131–1140 | Cite as

Home range area in the tortoise Testudo hermanni in relation to habitat complexity: implications for conservation of biodiversity

  • S. Longepierre
  • A. Hailey
  • C. Grenot


The tortoise Testudo hermanni is endangered by habitat fragmentation and loss in western Europe, where its high public profile and specific conservation projects make this a flagship species. Studies of movement in the peak reproductive season (June) showed that home ranges were substantially larger in France than in Greece. This difference was due to the intensity of use of the home range, not to the distance moved which was remarkably similar in the two areas. There was no sexual difference in home range area. The home range was therefore not large in France because of movement to nesting sites, but rather for utilization of the greater habitat complexity there. The need for reserves to include different vegetation types makes conservation of T. hermanni in France more difficult. Conversely, the need for large reserves increases its value as an umbrella species for conservation of biodiversity.

flagship species fragmentation France habitat complexity home range movement Testudo hermanni tortoise umbrella species 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Longepierre
    • 1
  • A. Hailey
    • 1
  • C. Grenot
    • 1
  1. 1.Ecole Normale Supérieure, Laboratoire d'EcologieParisFrance

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