From 1993 to 1995, field surveys were conducted in western Madagascar to assess the current status of the angonoka tortoise (Geochelone yniphora) in the wild. Tortoise presence was documented at 10 of 11 localities surveyed. These localities represent at least five populations, all within a 30-km radius of Baly Bay, near the town of Soalala. The populations occur on fragments of habitat ranging from <50 to 4–6000 ha in size. One hundred and forty-five tortoises were marked in the five populations. Hatchling or juvenile tortoises were observed in all populations, indicating that reproduction was occurring. Most of the 145 tortoises (68%) were marked on Cape Sada, where monthly surveys were conducted. The tortoise density on the c. 150 ha peninsula was 0.66 tortoises/ha. The remains of 22 dead juveniles were found on Cape Sada over the 2-year period. This evidence, combined with the low number of juveniles in intermediate size classes in the Cape Sada population suggests that juvenile mortality may be high.
|Title||Status and distribution of the angonoka tortoise (Geochelone yniphora) of western Madagascar|
|Authors||Lora L. Smith, Don Reid, Bourou Robert, Mahatoly Joby, Sibo Clement|
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Series Title||Biological Conservation|
|Record Source||USGS Publications Warehouse|
|USGS Organization||Southeast Ecological Science Center|