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17 January 2024 Notes on Kinosternon steindachneri in a North Florida Sandhill Community
C. Kenneth Dodd, Jr.
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A drift fence with pitfall bucket traps installed around a temporary pond in north Florida sandhills resulted in captures of hatchling, subadult, and adult Florida Mud Turtles, Kinosternon steindachneri. Information on hatching and hatchling size, activity, and movements corroborated the scant information available in the literature on this species. Four adults were fitted with transmitters and their activity was recorded from 1 to several months. As the pond dried, adults moved long distances overland in a short period of time to other temporary ponds in the vicinity. Later, 3 of 4 turtles moved to leaf litter in nearby forested habitats and buried into the substrate as summer temperatures increased, drought set in, and pond levels decreased. Florida Mud Turtles inhabiting isolated and patchily distributed ponds need terrestrial habitats nearby during periods of dormancy and as movement corridors between wetlands. Conservation and management will require buffer zones around wetlands that allow for interwetland movements across terrestrial landscapes.

C. Kenneth Dodd, Jr. "Notes on Kinosternon steindachneri in a North Florida Sandhill Community," Chelonian Conservation and Biology 22(2), 233-240, (17 January 2024).
Received: 29 August 2023; Accepted: 25 September 2023; Published: 17 January 2024
Kinosternon steindachneri
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