Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Navigation

Personal tools
You are here: Home / Groups / Rio Mora NWR Collaborative / Research and Studies / NMHU Research Day 2014 / The Response of Snapping Turtles (Chelydra serpentina) Population to Bullfrog Removal in the Mora River of Northern New Mexico

The Response of Snapping Turtles (Chelydra serpentina) Population to Bullfrog Removal in the Mora River of Northern New Mexico

Poster: Snapping turtles (Chelydra serpentina) are not well studied in New Mexico, and they have not been studied with relation to invasive species in Northern New Mexico. Recently, there have been many studies on herpetofauna and their responses to the invasive American bullfrog (Lithobates catesbeianus) along the Mora River at the Rio Mora National Wildlife Refuge. In a past study, bullfrogs were eradicated experimentally for a basis to learn about their impacts on native species. Snapping turtles live in the same habitats as bullfrogs and their hatchlings are potentially prey for bullfrogs. After bullfrogs eradication we have found neonate snapping turtles while no neonates were seen in the area where bullfrogs are still present. So I surmise that bullfrogs may have an impact on the population of snapping turtles. In this study I will evaluate the behavior and abundance of both adult and juvenile snapping turtles in response to the presence or absence of bullfrog. I will equip 8 snapping turtles with ATS radio telemetry transmitters and follow them for the next year documenting their preferred habitat, mating and nesting grounds. I will also perform systematic mark and capture throughout the summer to understand their demography and distribution. Understanding the habitat that snapping turtles select will help land managers incorporate protection of these habitats for this unrecognized and elusive species. Not only will this study provide baseline data on the behavior of snapping turtles in this region, it will provide a better understanding of the interactions between invasive and native species.
Document Actions
Filed under:
RMNWR Events

 
Plone 4