Little is known concerning predation of rough-footed mud turtles (Kinosternon hirtipes), a species of conservation concern in Texas, USA. During field studies conducted from 2007 to 2016, we documented 8 instances (1 juvenile, 2 males, and 5 females) of predation among individuals of one of the few (<10) remaining populations of K. hirtipes in Texas. Predation was attributed to raccoons (Procyon lotor; n = 5) and feral pigs (Sus scrofa; n = 2); the predator responsible for the death of one of the turtles could not be determined. Turtles are vulnerable to predation when exposed by low water levels in ponds, when making overland movements between ponds, and during nesting forays ashore. To reduce the likelihood of predation, we recommend maintaining adequate water levels in wetlands, linking wetlands with ditches, encouraging the growth of aquatic vegetation, and providing experimental raccoon-proof nest mounds.
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Vol. 79 • No. 1