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Monday, January 25 • 11:20am - 11:40am
Wood Turtle Research and Conservation Strategies in Wisconsin

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AUTHORS: Carly Lapin*, Wisconsin DNR; Jim Woodford, Wisconsin DNR; Tiffany Bougie, Wisconsin DNR; Laura Jaskiewicz, Wisconsin DNR

ABSTRACT: The wood turtle Glyptemys insculpta is a state-listed threatened species in Wisconsin. We investigated species ecology and conservation strategies in the upper St. Croix and Wisconsin river watersheds in northern Wisconsin. In 2014 and 2015 we captured and processed 98 wood turtles, 32 of which were located 2-3 times per week using radio telemetry and 13 of which were located more frequently using GPS technology to identify nest sites, movement patterns, and road crossing locations. We identified 65 wood turtle nests, 27 of which were protected using several different methods. Of the 65 nests, 18 (28%) were predated, 17 (26%) did not hatch (all but 1 in 2014), 29 (45%) successfully hatched, and 1 had an unknown outcome. Between the 2 study locations, a total of 9 nest sites were created or restored above flood stage, 3 of which were protected from predation with electric fencing; in 2015, 4 of these sites were used voluntarily by nesting wood turtles. In addition, we identified 11 locations where wood turtles were frequently crossing roads and at risk for road mortality, and we installed barriers to prevent road access as well as signage to attempt to reduce the risk of road mortality at several of these sites. We will provide preliminary project results, including population estimates, survival, nest success and hatching rates, and home range analysis, as well as feedback on several different conservation strategies.

Monday January 25, 2016 11:20am - 11:40am EST
Emerald B