the online meeting place for all who love our amphibians and reptiles
Home Page Live Forums Archived Forums Site Search Identify Record Donate Projects Links
Forum Home Forum Home > Alien & Naturalised species of the UK > Naturalised
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - European pond tortoise Emys orbicularis
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

European pond tortoise Emys orbicularis

 Post Reply Post Reply Page  12>
Author
Message
FB knowles View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 17 Mar 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 5
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote FB knowles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: European pond tortoise Emys orbicularis
    Posted: 16 Jul 2003 at 10:25pm
Hi

Does anyone out there no about the status of the European pond tortoise in southern England. There were rumours of it being found breeding at frencham ponds some years back. i know that it is a very long lived species, so i guess colonies could exist for many years without actually breeding. But does anybody have any up to date info?

Fairbrass Knowles
Back to Top
Martin View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member


Joined: 23 Feb 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 87
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Martin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Jul 2003 at 8:19am
I've looked in a lot of ponds within Hampshire for terrapins and I've not seen any emys. All the terrapins I've spotted have been North American species, so I'm not much help.

Martin.
Back to Top
FB knowles View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 17 Mar 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 5
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote FB knowles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Jul 2003 at 6:48pm
Hi Martin,

Yes i have seen the red eared terrapins too!! even saw quite a few in ponds on a recent trip to Brittany, i wonder if they can breed in the warmer parts of Europe?

Cheers, Fairbrass
Back to Top
Chris G-O View Drop Down
Member
Member
Avatar

Joined: 14 May 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 29
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chris G-O Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Jan 2004 at 10:24pm
European pond terrapins have been seen in the last 10 years or so on the Norfolk Broads, sightings came from RSPB staff i think. I think there were intros there about 100 yrs ago.

Out of interest, i saw a red-eared terrapin on the 5th Jan 2004 in an ornamental pond in Venice. It wasn't exactly warm (c.11 degrees), but there didn't seem to be anywhere for it to hibernate really.

cheers,
Chris
Chris Gleed-Owen, Research & Monitoring Officer, The HCT & BHS Research Committee Chair
Back to Top
chas View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 27
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Jan 2005 at 10:40am
A "Survival Anglia" wildlife film producer met with a large female Emys orb. (Euro. pond tortoise) crossing a narrow, isolated lane in N. Norfolk in the 1990s.
Charles Snell
Back to Top
-LAF View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: 03 Apr 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 317
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote -LAF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Jan 2005 at 6:47pm
The NBN gateway has a listing for Emys at lakes nr Leicester. The same lakes are also listed as having red-ears though.

Lee.
Lee Fairclough
Back to Top
Ben Potterton View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 20 Aug 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 3
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ben Potterton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Aug 2005 at 2:47pm

Hi I have recently been given an adult male European Pond Turtle that was found in the Norfolk Broad area and have been told of 4 others that have been found in the general area.

DEFRA tell me that none exist in the Broads network but 5 inderviduals seem unusual.

I have been collecting all surplus specimens from UK zoo's and hope to breed from them, but want to know if a wild or feral population exists?

Any ideas?

Back to Top
Ben Potterton View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 20 Aug 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 3
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ben Potterton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Aug 2005 at 7:49am

Thanks David, All of those found in and around the Norfolk Broads have come via the RSPCA and they have not been able to give me any indication on the exact spot that they were found.

I am keeping the Norfolk specimens seperate from the others that I have, the Herp TAG work was by Joe Blossom, but sadly the zoo's concerned had no idea as to the origin of the stock.

Joe Blossom also has some that he keeps outside all year, I will show him my stock and with any luck we will be able to decide on a plan of action.

Ben.

 

Back to Top
chas View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 27
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Aug 2005 at 6:18am

David Bird's post about keeping the Norfolk specimens (Emys orbicularis) separate is an important issue.

Remains of the European pond tortoise have been found in East Anglia (and I believe particularly in Norfolk) dating back to as late as ca. 5000 years ago. Some authors, e.g. Marr, J. E., Shipley, A.E. (1904) describe the species as being once common in the fens. There is, therefore, no doubt that it is a native species, the question being, are the specimens presently being found the result of an introduction or the remains of a relict population which is, with climatic warming, possibly now able to breed with greater frequency? (In Poland they do not successfully breed most years but still maintain viable populations aided by their longevity). They presumably persisted for sometime after the date of the fossil finds; even as late as the time of the Roman invasion Britain still had a milder climate than at present.

There is also no doubt that introductions to East Anglia have occurred; for example some were released in Blaxhall and Little Glemham in Suffolk between 1894 - 95.

There have been sporadic sightings in Norfolk for some time.  Earlier on this site, I mentioned the finding of a large female in north Norfolk (Mike Linley- Anglia TV scientific contributor) and other posts do seem to be suggesting that these finds are not uncommon.  The earliest reference I can find is one accidentally excavated alive in fen peat at Ludham, Norfolk in 1904 where it had apparently dug itself in for hibernation.  During the milder climates experienced 5000 years ago, populations also existed in countries bordering the Baltic Sea, such as Denmark and Sweden.  The Danish and Swedish populations have also gone extinct in the interim whereas other populations around the Baltic still persist in north eastern Germany, Poland, Latvia and Lithuania. If the European pond tortoise story mirrors that of the pool frog Rana lessonae in Norfolk, post-glacial colonisation by Emys could have occurred in a west to east direction from the Baltic area. (See the Snell, Tetteh and Evans paper mentioned on the pool frog reintroduction pages on this website I could email a copy if contacted by pm button (private mail)).  The pool frog story was also complicated by introductions of the species or related species.  There is no doubt that some or all of the recent pond tortoise finds could be as result of introduction and genetic testing would be interesting to come to some kind of conclusion.  It would be my guess that if any of the Norfolk Emys have a chance of being native they ought to be more closely related to those in north-eastern Germany and Poland than to those in France or more southern European countries, as was the case with the pool frog.  (As late as about 9000 years ago there was a land bridge across the North Sea between Scandinavia, the Low Countries and East Anglia).

 



Edited by chas
Charles Snell
Back to Top
chas View Drop Down
Member
Member


Joined: 30 Jan 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Status: Offline
Points: 27
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Aug 2005 at 8:46am

It has always been assumed in Denmark that the pond tortoise died out between the iron and Bronze ages, but as David Bird points out in his last post, some were found in the 1990s of unknown origin.  I have found two Danish web sites on Emys (in Danish) both seem to suggest that there are still some Emys in central Jutland.  One of the sites also indicated that there are a few on the island of Bornholm and that those on Jutland had been genetically tested (8 were caught and seven were tested) the results showing that the animals were not of the type found further south in Europe.  This, of course, increases the likelihood (but not proving the case) of there being being a relict population.

Charles Snell
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply Page  12>
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Forum Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 11.06
Copyright ©2001-2016 Web Wiz Ltd.

This page was generated in 0.047 seconds.