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Preliminary Results of Home Range and Movement of the Eastern Box Turtle (Terrapene carolina) in the North Georgia Piedmont

 A. Rittgers, K. Bonadie; Advisors: N.L. Hyslop, J.L. Mook 

Department of Biology, University of North Georgia 

Terrapene carolina (Eastern Box Turtle) is a terrestrial species from New Hampshire to Georgia in the Eastern United States. The species is experiencing range-wide population decline and is classified as vulnerable by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. Despite the species’ status, little long-term research has been conducted regarding home range and habitat use in the Southeastern US. To contribute to the knowledge of the species in this region, we have conducted a radiotelemetry study since 2013 to investigate factors that influence T. carolina movement, survival, and habitat use in the Northeastern Piedmont region of Georgia. The study site is composed of mixed hardwood-pine uplands, primarily comprised of oaks and maples; mesic and upland areas dominated by Chinese privet (Ligustrum sinense); beaver-created wetlands; and maintained utility line areas. Our research includes 32 radio-transmitted turtles that are tracked on foot by homing 1-2 times per month. From March 2013 to October 2018 we collected an average of 57 radiolocations (range: 1 to 179) per turtle. Cumulative home ranges (100% minimum convex polygon) for turtles tracked, with a minimum of 30 radiolocations, averaged 1.31 ha (range 0.04-6.94) ha (n=19). Additional results include shifts in annual home range, seasonal movement patterns, and overwintering site fidelity of T. carolina.


This is a metadata-only record.



  • Subject
    • Biology

  • Institution
    • Gainesville

  • Event location
    • MPR 3

  • Event date
    • 22 March 2019

  • Date submitted

    19 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      Dr. Natalie Hyslop and Dr. Jennifer Mook