Populations of Neotoma floridana (Eastern Woodrat) are decreasing in parts of their geographic range in the southeastern United States, and the species is stateendangered in Illinois. Once found throughout the Shawnee Hills region of southern Illinois, woodrats were restricted to four known populations in Jackson and Union counties by the late 1980s. We used reintroductions to establish viable populations of Eastern Woodrats at previously occupied sites in Illinois. From April 2003 through March 2009, we released 422 Eastern Woodrats live trapped in Arkansas and Missouri into 5 historically occupied sites in southeastern Illinois. Recapture rate 1 month after release was 12.5%. The continued presence of woodrats at release sites, reproduction, and wide dispersal beyond reintroduction sites all suggest preliminary success of the reintroduction of this r-selected species.
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Vol. 12 • No. 1