Selected Demography and Population Estimation of Trachemys scripta (Yellow-bellied Slider) in North Carolina as it Relates to Turtle Harvesting.

Show full item record

Title: Selected Demography and Population Estimation of Trachemys scripta (Yellow-bellied Slider) in North Carolina as it Relates to Turtle Harvesting.
Author: Miller, Veronica A.
Advisors: Harold Heatwole, Committee Chair
Ken Pollock, Committee Member
Phil Doerr, Committee Member
Jamie Collazo, Committee Member
Alvin Braswell, Committee Member
Abstract: In the year 2000, a reported 460 turtles were removed from North Carolina for commercial use. In 2002, the reported take of turtles soared to a staggering 23,311 turtles. A continuation of this trend could severely deplete the turtle populations of North Carolina in a short time. Therefore a moratorium on commercial turtle harvesting was instituted by the North Carolina General Assembly on July 1, 2003, effective until the NC Wildlife Resources Commission could determine rules and regulations for harvesting. It is crucial to know the level of harvest that populations can sustain, and, if a population is harvestable, which age groups are most sensitive to harvest. Regulations on reporting and validation of numbers, identifications, sizes, and sex of turtles will be crucial. I conducted a mark-recapture survey of freshwater turtles in six eastern Piedmont ponds: three of which had been harvested and three of which had no record of harvest. I tested for differences in sex ratios, size and age distributions, and population densities between the harvested and unharvested populations of Yellow-bellied Sliders (Trachemys scripta). Although no significant differences were found between the two types of populations, the amount of variance in the results does not allow any clear conclusions to be drawn. Severe weather impacts on habitat may have influenced sampling results. More research is required to determine the true effects turtle harvesting has on populations, including extensive stage-based simulation modeling and determination of metapopulations.
Date: 2006-05-16
Degree: MS
Discipline: Zoology
URI: http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/resolver/1840.16/1956


Files in this item

Files Size Format View
etd.pdf 881.6Kb PDF View/Open

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show full item record