doi:

DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1245.2011.00223

Asian Herpetological Research 2011/2:4 PP.223-229

Spatial Ecology of Translocated and Resident Amur Ratsnakes (Elaphe schrenckii) in Two Mountain Valleys of South Korea


Abstract:
The translocation of snakes has been viewed as a useful tool to augment declining populations and to mitigate human-wildlife conflicts, even though released snakes often exhibit relatively high mortality. We radio-tracked 13 Amur Ratsnakes (Elaphe schrenckii) in the Woraksan National Park in South Korea from July 2008 to May 2009. Two of these snakes were residents, and 11 had been illegally captured in areas remote from the study site and were donated by the park office. During the study period, six of the translocated snakes were lost: two were killed by predators, one died of unknown causes, and the radio signals of three of the snakes were lost. In the field, the ratsnakes laid eggs in early August, moved into hibernacula in late November, and moved away from the hibernacula in mid-April. Compared to the resident snakes, five of the translocated snakes traveled approximately 1.3 times farther per week, and the home ranges of the translocated snakes were three to six times larger than those of the resident snakes. In addition, the translocated snakes were found underground more frequently than the resident snakes. The management recommendations resulting from this study will guide biologists and land use managers in making appropriate decisions regarding release sites and the use of gravid females in the translocation of this endangered ratsnake.

Key words:Amur Ratsnake, conservation, Elaphe schrenckii, radiotelemetry, translocation

ReleaseDate:2014-07-21 16:05:28



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