SREL Reprint #1019




Movement Patterns Among Turtle Populations:  Applicability to Management of the Desert Tortoise

J. Whitfield Gibbons


Long-distance movement by turtles is ascribed to four distinct categories:  (1) nest site selection, (2) seasonal migration, (3) departure from unfavorable habitat conditions, and (4) movement by males in search of females.  Each category is discussed in terms of its applicability to the relocation of desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii) as a management response to habitat loss.  One conclusion is that insufficient information is available for G. agassizii in any of the movement categories at this time and intensive research efforts must be undertaken before relocation programs with predictable results can be established.

Key words:  Gopherus agassizii; Emigration; Management; Movement patterns; Nesting; Turtle


SREL Reprint #1019

Gibbons, J.W. 1986. Movement patterns among turtle populations: Applicability to management of the desert tortoise. Herpetologica 42:104-113.

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