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Variation in Strontium-90 Exoskeletal Burdens of Turtles (Reptilia: Testudines) in Southeastern United States

Crawford G. Jackson, Jr., Charlie M. Holcomb, Skaidrite Kleinbergs-Krisans and Marguerite M. Jackson
Herpetologica
Vol. 30, No. 4 (Dec., 1974), pp. 406-409
Published by: Allen Press on behalf of the Herpetologists' League
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3891439
Page Count: 4
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Variation in Strontium-90 Exoskeletal Burdens of Turtles (Reptilia: Testudines) in Southeastern United States
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Abstract

Bone ash samples of the osseous shell of 73 individuals representing 12 species of testudinid and chelydrid turtles collected in southeastern USA (Alabama, Georgia and Florida) were assayed for 90 Sr. Exoskeletal burdens ranged from 0.5-228 pCi/g bone ash, being uniformly quite low in specimens taken from rapidly flowing waters of subterranean origin but consistently high in the single strictly terrestrial species (Gopherus polyphemus) examined. Exoskeletal burdens of other aquatic specimens were generally intermediate, reasonably uniform, and exhibited overlapping ranges interspecifically. 90 Sr content seems most closely associated with habitat preference, although geographic locality may also be a significant factor.

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