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Accueil du site → Master → Etats Unis → 2011 → Early life stage ecology of the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) in the south-central Mojave Desert

Utah State University (2011)

Early life stage ecology of the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) in the south-central Mojave Desert

Bjurlin, Curtis D.

Titre : Early life stage ecology of the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) in the south-central Mojave Desert

Auteur : Bjurlin, Curtis D.

Université de soutenance : Utah State University

Grade : Master of Science (MS) 2001

Résumé
I studied desert tortoise early life stage survival, nesting behavior, and the impacts of predators at the Sand Hill Training Area of the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, 1997-1999. Using radiotelemetry, x-radiography, and thread-trailers, I determined that 74% of 42 nests survived incubation, 69% of 132 eggs in surviving nests produced healthy neonates, and 88% of 25 neonates survived during autumn dispersal from the nest. Most females nested at tortoise burrows (88.1%) and chose locations with greater thermal insulation as the season progressed. Mean incubation was 83.3 days, with longer development for eggs oviposited early in the season. Nest humidity may have caused annual differences in neonate size. Ravens were not important predators of young tortoises, kit foxes consumed many tortoise nests, and free-ranging dogs likely were responsible for widespread shell damage, harassment, and mortality of adult tortoises.

Mots clés : Ecology, California, Zoology, Biological sciences

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