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Seasonally Dynamic Habitat Use by Spotted (Clemmys guttata) and Blanding's Turtles (Emydoidea blandingii) in Maine
Frederic Beaudry, Phillip G. deMaynadier and Malcolm L. Hunter, Jr.
Journal of Herpetology
Vol. 43, No. 4 (Dec., 2009), pp. 636-645
Published by: Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25599265
Page Count: 10
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We used radio-telemetry to investigate the seasonal dynamics of wetland use by Spotted Turtles (Clemmys guttata) and Blanding's Turtles (Emydoidea blandingii) in southern Maine. Habitat use was examined in a temporally segregated manner, comparing wetland use among seasonally discrete activity periods. Distinct seasonal movement patterns were detected and logistic regression revealed significant differences in wetland characteristics across seasons for both species. Spotted Turtles exhibited a positive association with wetlands hosting abundant Wood Frog (Lithobates sylvaticus) egg masses in spring, and a negative association with forested wetlands from spring through late summer. Blanding's Turtles were closely associated with forested wetlands in spring, wetlands with abundant Wood Frog egg masses and good sun exposure in early summer, and deep-water wetlands in late summer and fall. The seasonal differences in habitat use found in this study highlight the complex and dynamic landscape required to sustain these rare turtles. Spotted and Blanding's Turtles' diverse habitat requirements require frequent terrestrial movements, exposing them to threats for which mitigation requires understanding spatial and temporal shifts in habitats use.
Journal of Herpetology © 2009 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles