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Home ranges and movements of the Chinese stripe-necked turtle (Ocadia sinensis) in the Keelung River, northern Taiwan

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We investigated home ranges and movements of 13 adult Ocadia sinensis by radio-tracking in a narrow and disturbed riverine habitat of the Keelung River, northern Taiwan from January 2001 to April 2002. Our results indicated that individuals of this turtle were sedentary, with home range length averaging 703 m (range 170-1460 m). Home range length did not differ between the sexes. Movement patterns of radio-tracked turtles were highly variable, with no apparent seasonal patterns. The daily movement distances ranged from 5-245 m, equalling 0.3 to 47.1% of their home range length. Usually, O. sinensis moved into a new pool during flooding or after a longer period of low water level. This turtle was seldom relocated terrestrially, showing its highly aquatic nature. Ocadia sinensis used the riverine habitat unevenly, preferring the deep and slow-current pools and avoiding highly modified river sections. Our results raise conservation concern about loss of deeper, slow-current pools in many river management projects, which was important habitat for O. sinensis in their home ranges.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Life Science, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei 116, Taiwan


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