May 18th 2016
It was a sunny day at Kickapoo State Recreation Area with little to no wind. We captured eight turtles in total during a 2 hour search effort.
An added gem to this search effort is that it correlates with Jeremy’s PhD study! His radiotelemetry project with Eastern Box Turtles was planned to be at Kickapoo, so he is utilizing the canines to increase the sample size number of his study!
Overview of the eight turtles captured today
One of the turtles was an incidental finding, rather than a canine capture.
Five of the turtles captured were recaptures, while three were not.
Four of the Eastern Box Turtles were females and four were males.
All of the turtles were adults.
Here are the abnormalities of note from this search effort:
How Jeremy’s PhD project intertwines with Turtle Team
Jeremy is using Kickapoo as the site in his study. He will be tracking Eastern Box Turtles by utilizing radiotelemetry. The turtles we found here at Kickapoo were put into his study! He attached an iButton, which tracks the turtles’ body temperatures every hour, and a radiotransmitter onto the turtles’ shells. He returned the turtles to the exact location at which they were found the very next day.
He uses radiowaves to find the turtles again. Every other day he takes notes about their location, surrounding environment, and behavior. Every 2 weeks he weighs, draws blood, and collects swabs from each turtle in order to look for detectable pathogens and other hematologic health parameters, like White Blood Cell counts, back at the lab.
He started this project mid-April. From this search effort he was able to enter the 8 turtles into his study and he added 6 more turtles thanks to further visual searches on other days at Kickapoo.
Next post I will write about the search effort at my favorite site and the Box Turtle Conference that occurred simultaneously!