How to translate text using browser tools
26 September 2022 Range-Wide Population Projections for Northern Red-Bellied Cooters (Pseudemys rubriventris)
Jill Fleming, Jennifer F. Moore, Hardin Waddle, Julien Martin, Evan H. Campbell Grant
Author Affiliations +

Northern Red-Bellied Cooters (Pseudemys rubriventris) have a disjunct distribution with a relictual population in southeastern Massachusetts and a larger range across the mid-Atlantic United States. The relictual population is currently listed with protections under the U.S. Endangered Species Act but the status of the population in the remainder of the species' range has not been assessed, and there is concern that it may be at risk of extinction without protection. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service requires scientific information of the species' status to inform conservation decisions. There is little empirical information available from P. rubriventris populations and, furthermore, the majority of what exists comes from the disjunct northern subpopulation. To fill data gaps in the species' life history and reduce geographic bias, we supplement available data from P. rubriventris with demographic rate estimates from other Pseudemys species to parameterize an age-structured population projection model. Our estimate of mean population growth rate was 0.987 (0.92–1.04), indicating that P. rubriventris populations may be in decline. However, there was considerable uncertainty in our results, with 35% of projections resulting in stable or increasing populations. Additional uncertainty about parameter values, geographic variation, and current threats limit the assessment. We discuss the merits and limitations of our population projection modeling (PPM) approach where other analytical methods are precluded by lack of available data.

Copyright 2022 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles
Jill Fleming, Jennifer F. Moore, Hardin Waddle, Julien Martin, and Evan H. Campbell Grant "Range-Wide Population Projections for Northern Red-Bellied Cooters (Pseudemys rubriventris)," Journal of Herpetology 56(3), 362-369, (26 September 2022).
Accepted: 12 April 2022; Published: 26 September 2022
Get copyright permission
Back to Top