Few data are available on the head-starting of the European Pond Turtle (Emys orbicularis) and some seem to indicate unique features during first year of development. A slow growth rate might have important consequences on the usefulness of head-starting in this species. We head-started 12 E. Orbicularis galloitalica hatchlings for eight months. We individually marked hatchlings and kept them in an aquarium equipped with UV-b light tubes. Water temperature was kept at 240C and we provided them a basking site at 300C. We first fed hatchlings small fresh items, then shifted to larger prey. We measured and weighed hatchlings weekly and released them as a part of a reintroduction project. The survival rate of released individuals was 83% after one year. Released turtles started breeding when they were six years old, and attained an adult body size similar to turtles from natural populations very quickly. Our results suggest that E. orbicularis head-starting can be successful.
|Titolo:||Head starting european pond turtle (Emys orbicularis) for reintroduction : patterns of growth rates|
FICETOLA, GENTILE FRANCESCO (Secondo)
|Parole Chiave:||Captive rearing; Conservation; Feeding ecology; Growth rates; Hatchlings; Turtle captive managment|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore BIO/05 - Zoologia|
|Data di pubblicazione:||28-giu-2015|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01 - Articolo su periodico|