Comparative Morphology of Three Populations of Testudo graeca Linnaeus, 1758 from the Western Taurus Mountains, Turkey

Oğuz Türkozan, Yusuf Kumlutaş, S. Hakan Durmuş

Abstract


We examined a total of 65 specimens of the Mediterranean spur-thighed tortoise Testudo graeca Linnaeus, 1758 from three distinct localities in the western Taurus Mountains of the Mediterranean region of Turkey: Kalkan (12 ♀, 14 ), Çığlıkara (6 ♀, 7 ♂), and Akseki (7 ♀, 19 ♂). For morphological comparisons 15 morphometric characters and 17 ratios developed by combination of characters were investigated. Post-ANOVA pairwise analysis (Tukey’s) across all groups verified sexual dimorphism in the Kalkan and Çığlıkara populations in terms of the following ratios: plastron length/plastron width 2 (p = 0.02) and straight carapace length/femoral suture length (p = 0.04), respectively. Females in all three populations are larger than males, and in the Çığlıkara population individuals are larger than those from other populations (ANOVA F(2.22) = 16.28, p < 0.0001). The maximum straight carapace length measured was of a female in the Çığlıkara population (295 mm). This is a new record size for Turkish tortoises. Discriminant analysis based on 13 ratios confirms that the Kalkan population tends to differ from the other two populations. This difference was more clear between Akseki and Kalkan.

Keywords


Reptilia; Testudines; Testudinidae; Testudo graeca; Taurus Mountains; Turkey

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