Comparing post-release cover and burrow use by differentially head-started Mojave desert tortoises in southern California.

Published online
14 May 2022
Content type
Journal article
Journal title
Conservation Evidence

McGovern, P. A. & Peaden, J. M. & Buhlmann, K. A. & Todd, B. D. & Tuberville, T. D.
Contact email(s)

Publication language
California & USA


The effects of indoor rearing versus the conventional method of solely outdoor head-starting on post-release cover and burrow use of juvenile Mojave desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii), a threatened endemic species, were investigated. We found that partially indoor-reared tortoises exhibited similar post-release behaviours when compared to both same-aged, but smaller, and similar-sized, but older outdoor-reared head-started tortoises, thus increasing the success and decreasing the costs of head-starting.

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