Bellinger River snapping turtle

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Bellinger River snapping turtle
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Testudines
Suborder: Pleurodira
Family: Chelidae
Subfamily: Chelodininae
Genus: Myuchelys
Species: M. georgesi
Binomial name
Myuchelys georgesi
(Cann, 1997)
Synonyms[2][3][4]
  • Elseya sp. 3
    IUCN Red List of 1996
  • Elseya georgesi Cann, 1997
  • Elseya sp. 3
    — IUCN Red List of 2000
  • Wollumbinia georgesi
    Wells, 2007
  • Elseya latisternum georgesi
    Artner, 2008
  • Myuchelys georgesi
    Thomson & Georges, 2009

The Bellinger River snapping turtle (Myuchelys georgesi ) is a species of turtle in the family Chelidae. The species is endemic to Australia.[2]

Etymology[edit]

The specific name, georgesi, is in honor of Australian herpetologist Arthur Georges.[5]

Geographic range[edit]

Myuchelys georgesi is found in the Bellinger River and its tributaries, mid-eastern New South Wales, Australia.[2]

Habitat[edit]

The preferred habitat of M. georgesi is the deeper pools of the clear-water upstream reaches of the river, where the water flows continuously in most months over a bedrock basement and a boulder, pebble and gravel bed.[6] The species takes advantage of the highly oxygenated water with low particulate load by supplementing its oxygen uptake through cloacal breathing.[7]

Diet[edit]

M. georgesi is essentially an omnivore, with tendencies leaning toward carnivory.[8] A high proportion of their food comes from benthic macro-invertebrate communities that are relatively sedentary and live in immediate association with the substratum, but with some terrestrial fruit and aquatic vegetation eaten.

Reproduction[edit]

M. georgesi nests from October to December, laying 10-15 oblong white hard-shelled eggs.[6]

Conservation status[edit]

Within the Bellinger drainage, a very restricted range, the species is widely distributed and locally abundant. Current threats to its persistence include habitat modification and loss of native riparian vegetation, associated turbidification and sedimentation, predation by the introduced European fox, and competition with the recently introduced turtle Emydura macquarii.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Rhodin, Anders G.J.; van Dijk, Peter Paul; Iverson, John B.; Shaffer, H. Bradley; Roger, Bour. (2011-12-31). "Turtles of the world, 2011 update: Annotated checklist of taxonomy, synonymy, distribution and conservation status". Chelonian Research Monographs 6: 000.213. doi:10.3854/crm.5.000.checklist.v4.2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-01-22. 
  2. ^ a b c Fritz, Uwe; Havaš, Peter. (2007). "Checklist of Chelonians of the World". Vertebrate Zoology 57 (2): 328–329. ISSN 18640-5755. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-12-17. Retrieved 29 May 2012. 
  3. ^ "Elseya georgesi (Bellinger River Snapping Turtle, Georges' (Snapping) Turtle)". IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. Retrieved 13 May 2012. 
  4. ^ "Myuchelys georgesi ". The Reptile Database. www.reptile-database.org.
  5. ^ Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael; Grayson, Michael. (2011). The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. xiii + 296 pp. ISBN 978-1-4214-0135-5. (Elseya georgesi, p. 99).
  6. ^ a b Cann, J. (1998). Australian Freshwater Turtles. Singapore: Beaumont Publishing. 292 pp. ISBN 978-9810406868.
  7. ^ King, P.; Heatwole, H. (1994). "Partitioning of aquatic oxygen uptake among different respiratory surfaces in a freely-diving pleurodiran turtle". Copeia 1994: 802-806.
  8. ^ Allanson, M.; Georges, A. (1999). "Diet of a sibling species pair of freshwater turtles, Elseya purvisi and Elseya georgesi (Testudinata: Chelidae), from eastern Australia". Chelonian Conservation and Biology 3: 473-476.
  9. ^ Georges, A.; Spencer, R.J.; Welsh, M.; Shaffer, H.B.; Walsh, R.; Zhang, X. (2011). "Application of the precautionary principle to taxa of uncertain status-the case of the Bellinger River Turtle". Endangered Species Research 14: 127-134.

Further reading[edit]

Cann, J. (1997). "Georges short-neck turtle, Elseya georgesi sp. nov.". Monitor: J. Victorian Herp. Soc. 9 (1): 18-23. (Elseya georgesi, new species).

External links[edit]