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Turtles of the Southeast

Overview

Seventy-five percent of the turtle species in the United States can be found in the Southeast. In fact, the region is second only to parts of Asia in its number of native turtles. Filled with more than two hundred color photographs and written with a special focus on conservation, this guide covers forty-five species of this nonthreatening, ancient lineage of long-lived reptiles.

Heavily illustrated, fact-filled descriptions of each species and its habitat comprise the heart of ...

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Overview

Seventy-five percent of the turtle species in the United States can be found in the Southeast. In fact, the region is second only to parts of Asia in its number of native turtles. Filled with more than two hundred color photographs and written with a special focus on conservation, this guide covers forty-five species of this nonthreatening, ancient lineage of long-lived reptiles.

Heavily illustrated, fact-filled descriptions of each species and its habitat comprise the heart of the book. Species accounts cover such information as descriptions of adults and hatchlings; key identifiers including size, distinctive characters and markings; land, river, pond, and wetland habitats; behaviors and activities; food and diet; reproduction; predators and defense; and conservation issues.

Also included is a wealth of general information about the importance of turtle conservation and the biology, diversity, and life history of turtles. Discussed are distinguishing turtle characteristics; differences among turtles, tortoises, and terrapins; shell structure and architecture; reproduction and longevity; turtle predators and defense mechanisms; and turtle activities such as basking, hibernation, aestivation, and seasonal movement. Useful information about the interactions of humans and turtles is also covered: species that are likely to be commonly encountered, turtles as pets, and more.

Clearly written, cleanly designed, and fun to use, the guide will promote a better understanding of the habitat needs of, and environmental challenges to, this fascinating group of animals.

Features:

  • In-depth descriptions of the forty-two native species
  • Conservation-oriented approach
  • More than two hundred color photographs
  • Nearly forty distribution maps
  • Clear descriptions of each species, including differences in the appearance of young and mature turtles
  • “Did You Know?” sidebars of interesting turtle facts
  • Size charts; key identifiers; and information about habitat, behavior and activity, food and feeding, reproduction, predators and defense, and conservation
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
For true turtle lovers, the great Southeast is the place to go. Three-quarters of U.S. turtle species live in the region; in fact, no locale in the New World can match this quadrant's share of lumbering, long-lived, hard-shelled creatures. Turtles of the Southeast provides a superb one-stop guide to these fascinating reptiles, blending more than two hundred color photographs with a full bounty of text, sidebars, and charts on every aspect and variety of turtledom.
From the Publisher
"[An] exquisite book . . . on the herpetofauna of the southeastern United States . . . High-quality, clearly written, with an attractive layout . . . Has solid introductory information, detailed species descriptions, excellent range maps and color photographs, line drawings showing defining features, and a strong conservation message. There is an explanation as to how to use the species accounts which will be of value to the lay reader."—Herpetological Review

"This very accessible, informative, and beautiful book will be appreciated by turtle enthusiasts living anywhere in the U.S."—Southeastern Naturalist

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780820329024
  • Publisher: University of Georgia Press
  • Publication date: 2/1/2008
  • Series: Wormsloe Foundation Nature Book Series
  • Pages: 264
  • Sales rank: 724,570
  • Product dimensions: 7.60 (w) x 10.20 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Kurt Buhlmann is a research scientist at the University of Georgia’s Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (SREL). Tracey Tuberville is a research coordinator at SREL. Whit Gibbons is a professor of ecology at the University of Georgia and Senior Research Ecologist at SREL. He is coauthor of Snakes of the Southeast (Georgia).

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Table of Contents

All About Turtles

Why Turtles? 1

Defining the Southeast 2

Naming Turtles 2

Turtle Diversity 5

General Biology of Turtles

Morphology 7

Activity 11

Food and Feeding 14

Reproduction 18

Defense 22

Predators 24

Age and Longevity 26

Maturity 28

Turtle Habitats in the Southeast

Terrestrial Habitats 32

Freshwater Wetland Habitats 34

River System Habitats 37

Brackish Water Habitats 39

Marine Habitats 39

Species Accounts

Organization and Order of Species Accounts 41

Basic Features of the Species Accounts 42

Terrestrial Turtles 45

Semiaquatic Turtles 61

Riverine Turtles 121

Brackish Water Turtles 191

Marine Turtles 201

U.S. Species Not Found in the Southeast 208

People and Turtles

What Is a Herpetologist? 219

Keeping Turtles as Pets 225

Turtles as Food 228

A Conservation Vision for Turtles 231

What Kinds of Turtles Are Found in Your State? 235

Glossary 237

Further Reading 241

Acknowledgments 243

Credits 245

Index of Scientific Names 247

Index of Common Names 249

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