eastern box turtle x-ing - Page 2 - FaunaClassifieds
 Sponsors »  Breeders | Dealers |  Importers/Exporters | Caging | Feed | Supplies | Services | Events 
  Inside FaunaClassifieds » Product Reviews |  Classifieds!   | Photo Gallery   | Banner Advertising 
  Want to help support this site? Click here.

Go Back   FaunaClassifieds > Reptile & Amphibian - General Discussion Forums > Field Collecting/Observing


Field Collecting/Observing Sightings of herps in the wild, where-tos and how-tos, as well as photos of herps in their native environment.

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-24-2004, 02:19 PM   #11
Bill oakley
After reading this I would have to agree with Box4u, you are not helping by taking a animal out of the wild to sell. Also skycock does not seem to be very professional in his last posts, but Box4u you have been explaining yourself very well.

Old 06-24-2004, 08:45 PM   #12
Glenn Bartley
Interesting discussion...


I was truly curious to see what you were planning to do with the Box Turtles you caught so I asked my question. As opposed to some other(s), such as Devan, who have voiced opinion(s) in this thread, I have nothing against collecting resources from the wild, nor anything against making a profit from such collection, nor anything against captive breeding programs of wild caught animals so long as all of these activities are legal and ethical. I do however, based upon your posts, have something to say about the way in which you seem to regard collection of Box Turtles. This is not an attack, merely a discussion based upon things you have already said, please let’s keep it at that.

You claim your activities are legal, and I will not dispute your claim without some sort of indicator that they are otherwise. Yet despite the presumed legality of your actions regarding the collection of every Box Turtle you encountered as described in your recent posts (or at least everyone that you have told us about to date in this thread if I read correctly) your collection of these turtles is, in my opinion, wantonly undertaken. From what I can understand so far, based upon this thread, you have caught and kept everything you have seen with regards to Box Turtles on your recent herp cruises. Then you turn around and, in my opinion, rather self satisfyingly defend your actions as legal because someone else disagreed with them. Your actions may be legal in South Carolina, however, in my opinion they are not at all ethical if they are in fact indicative of your attitude toward collection of Box Turtles on the whole.

Once upon a time it was legal to collect Box Turtles and many other herps here in the State of New York. Today you can no longer collect Box Turtles legally in New York. NY has granted the Box Turtle game-animal status with no open season and with a possession limit of zero. In other words it is illegal to possess them (there may be exceptions for scientific purposes, rehabs and so forth). Some of the main reasons it was necessary for this status being placed upon Box Turtles was loss of the population due to habitat destruction, over predation by raccoons (who had lost other natural prey due to loss of suitable habitat for their other prey animals), and loss of the population due to LEGAL collection (which wound up being over collection). Thousands of Box Turtles were collected, each year for many years, for shipment to Europe where the Box Turtle was one of the species of US herps in highest demand. In fact tens of thousand were shipped each year, and I personally witnessed the seizure of a very large shipment by Customs officials many years ago for some type of customs violation. Others were kept as pets here in the state, others were killed by cars, by lawn mowers, by racoons, by other predators and by habitat destruction and so forth - yet over coillection was one of the biggest threats they faced because it was legal and was not limited. It is a pity that the state did not act sooner, and give the Box Turtle game-animal status sooner. Had they done so there would have been a plethora of funding for their protection from conservation monies gathered from all activities dealing with hunting and fishing excise taxes and license fees. There would possibly also have been a limit placed upon their take sooner, which may quite well have allowed people to still be collecting them and keeping them in accordance with well enforced game laws, such as there are limits placed upon other takeable game animals all of which are thriving. These other game animals even thrive in the face of habitat destruction in many areas, because much has been done to preserve at least pockets of habitat in certain areas. About the only thing that really threatens these other game animals today is illegal taking (poaching).

If you continue to take each and every Box Turtle you see, or even a sizeable percentage of those you encounter, you could potentially wipe out the viable breeding population in your area single handedly. While you may scoff at this, and snicker thinking this sounds crazy, allow me to assure you that with a species such as the Box Turtle which is already under pressure from such things as habitat destruction, heavy predation, and competition with other native species, such could conceivably happen and they could become extirpated in your area. Now take into consideration that Joe Blow who lives around the bend from you also goes out each time it rains to collect Box Turtles, and the prospect of their extirpation is doubled. If John and Jane Doe do likewise, it is now at least 4 times as bad a threat; in fact it maybe a higher multiple than that because the lower limit of the viable breeding population may have been reached by this time, and extirpation may become inevitable without outside assistance. Add to this the hits by cars, the take by raccoons (and other predators) of the young and the eggs, and loss of habitat and other losses, well the potential for disaster is increased by an unknown factor. If, on the other hand, you collect a couple to a few Box Turtles a season, this maybe another story, it may be tolerable by the local population – but bear in mind it takes years for the young to reach sexual maturity and you are apparently taking sexually mature adults, and apparently some of them may be gravid adults. You are, in my opinion, not in effect removing only five animals from the population, you are potentially removing them and their offspring. You in effect then are also removing their (both the adults’ and the as yet unhatched young’s) future breeding potential and therefore their potential for adding more individuals to the natural setting. Again things have potentially been increased by an unknown multiple of X.

There are other alternatives than collecting each that you see. I would think that picking up a Box Turtle from the road to place it in the brush at the side of the road was not the intended target of laws against relocating wildlife of which you have spoken. And before you rant against me as you have Devan, please bear in mind yes I have had some dealings with the Department of Environmental Conservation here in NY on this subject, and I am a board member on my local herp society and have taken part in conservation effort. I also am an avid hunter and fisherman, and collector of wild herps when legal and ethical. I do not agree with the opinion of Devan that collecting of wild animals is not a good thing. Yet I fully believe that it could be harmful, and unethical, to collect each and every specimen I see in a day’s herping or hunting or fishing even if I am legally allowed to do so – especially if I do this on multiple occasions. I also believe that my making excuses for my actions, had my actions been to collect each animal I encountered, would be little more than a self serving manner of saving face in light of the well deserved criticism I likely would face for having carried out such collecting. Heck I have pulled animals out of harm’s way on the roads and kept some of them, but I certainly have never kept every example of a species that I encountered in one day on a road, or in one sweep of the road, when I encountered multiple specimens. I have removed many more animals from the road to the safety of the off road area than I have collected, and have simply observed many, many more.

While the particular animals you caught may do well in captivity, and may have avoided being hit by cars (although you cannot know with any amount of certainty that these particular animals would have been hit unless such danger was imminently upon them) you have removed them from their natural surroundings. While this may not necessarily be detrimental to the individual turtles that you caught in the short term, it may have a marked detrimental effect upon the breeding population in the area. I know of what I speak from personal experience with inadvertent but yet possible over collection of Garter Snakes from a farm that was privately owned property on which I had permission and legal status to hunt herps. In two seasons, over only a few visits (3 or 4 to the farm each of those 2 years) I collected about 1/10 to 1/8 of what I saw in Garter Snakes. (Note I said of what I saw not of the entire population, and what I saw was likely much less than anywhere near the entire population.) Over the next few years the population of Garter Snakes on the farm declined dramatically. Of course I cannot say for sure that the decline was due to my collection, but I will always have that albatross around the neck of my conscience. Happily, I realized what may have been happening, and I held off on my collection of GS over the next couple to few years and the population began to increase markedly after about the third year. The thing that always amazed me was that there had been plenty of Garter Snakes left after I took what I had caught, and I caught both males and females, and no one else was taking any from the area, yet the population declined markedly. I also witnessed a great decline in the number of Smooth Green Snakes, not due to collection but probably due to mowing and use of certain pesticides by the farm owner over about a 2 or 3 year period. Their number also increased after a couple to a few years once certain practices had been changed in part to accommodate them. All of these actions were legal, yet possibly could have been unethical if we had been aware of the possible outcome of our actions (which at the time we had not been aware) because they resulted in the decline of these species.

I find it hard to fathom that in today’s world, you would not realize that over collection of any species is unethical. I also find it hard to believe that your collection of Box Turtles as described by you, and your apparent attitude about collection of herps, possibly would seem unethical to at least some, and possibly to many including yourself. To me your attitude and your collection practices seem as being at least indicative of over collection of a species for personal gain.

You said this:
fourth of all-i have licenses that say i can do whatever i want to with the eggs that i hatch in captivity from anything from black racers to spotted turtles and give them whatever price i feel if i deem it necessarry straight from the wildlife commission and DNR so dont try to make me feel like i am doing an injustice when 80% of people on this forum and most likely done some field collecting or tradeed/bought wild caught animals.
You may be doing an injustice if you catch all that you see, that is my point! Of course, you don't have to take all of them, not even the majority of them. In fact to establish a breeding colony you would need only a small handful and then leave it at that. They live a long time. Of course once you establish a breeding colony there are new options open to you besides just selling them, this does some to maintain but little to increase wild populations. Since you claim to be able to do whatever you want with the hatched eggs (I imagine you mean with the young turtles): well, then why don’t you release some to the wild.

Release to the wild, of captive bred specimens is often carried out by state game biologists or under their supervision. I would imagine that if you could get permission to catch and breed wildlife, then you could also get necessary permissions to breed and then release at least some of the progeny back into nature. (Please don’t give me a lecture on spreading disease to natural populations by doing such; I realize the potential for such but I also realize that wildlife programs across the country routinely release captive bred wildlife back into natural habitat without rampant outbreaks of disease that was introduced by the captive bred animals. Medical examinations of such animals are routinely carried out by wildlife biologists and wildlife veterinarians.) These programs have for the great part (in recent decades) helped to increase wild populations of our wildlife. Some such releases are done on an annual basis and have been done so for many decades. Your taking part in such a program would quite possibly do much to insure the continued wild populations of the species in your area that is otherwise possibly being threatened by over collection.

Just my opinion on the ideas expressed in this thread so far, some food for thought. You see Box Turtles are probably my favorite herp, and now I cannot keep them. I would hate to see that happen to others across the country, just as I hated to see it happen to my son, because of overzealous field collecting by they who hide behing the mere legality of their actions with little regard, in my opinion, to potential outcomes of their possibly unethical actions.

Best regards,
Glenn B
Old 08-28-2004, 12:05 AM   #13
Well I have no problem what so ever with taking reptiles out of the wild. I have had several wild caught reptiles some being nicer, tamer, and funner to mess with than my other CBs! I have an Eastern Box Turtle (male) now that has old shell wound and is missing a foot I soppose from a car but what ever it was it won't happen again now that he is a pet.

Also I don't know many people (that keep/breed reptiles) that have not got a reptile out of the wild and made a profet some time in there life. NOT to say there aren't I am shure there are but still I don't see a problem with it UNLESS that animal is endangered.

So what if I can't spell I'm not a speller I LOVE REPTILES not spelling !!!
Old 08-28-2004, 12:27 AM   #14

Also I don't know if any of you live in SC but I use to and on our farm there were 100s! The box turtles are not at all hurting from over collecting in SC at all.

My thought is that if you want to keep all you can of the WC box turtles to breed than why not just let a serten amount of your hatchlings go from each clutch you hatch. I know some people would love to go into a big debate about this to and try to prove why this would be a bad thing to do, too. But I am sorry to say I am not going to do that with you.
Old 08-31-2004, 08:19 PM   #15
It's up to you!

Well the sad thing is that eventually they will be gone, if no one stands up for them. You may scoff at this but the truth is it will happen. It is up to all of us to do our part to keep the native fauna in our country safe from over collection and loss of habitat. The right thing to do would be to pick up the animal and place it on the side of the road in the direction it was traveling.

It's easy to say they will never be gone from your area, but history proves you wrong. It may not be in your life time but may be in your kids life that they will just be a distant memory. And it will be you or your kids telling there kids that "I remember when".....Think about it?

And remember this, It has happened many times before! Just one small species the passenger pigeon, once thought to be the most numerous animal in the United States if not the world. There flocks would number in the hundred millions, the would darken the sky for a period of a few days at a time, sometimes measuring a mile wide and three hundred miles long!!!
Now the average person would think that they would never be gone!....but they were wiped of the face of this earth by ignorant men. Martha the last known living Passenger pigeon known to be alive died On September 1, 1914, the last of a population of billions!!!!

Yea...I can see you now laughing....but the truth is it was people with out insight that caused the total destruction of a single species...and thats only one of many in the U.S. alone!
So keep on "SAVING" those tortoises and maybe someday you'll really believe what you have done was right!

Overton Pratt

"Men still live who, in their youth remember pigeons;
trees still live that, in their youth, were shaken by a living wind. But a few decades hence only the oldest oaks will remember, and at long last only the hills will know.
We grieve because no living man will ever see again the onrush of victorius birds, sweeping a path for spring across the March skies, chasing the defeated winter from all of the woods and prairies.
There will always be pigeons in books and in museums but they are dead to all hardships and to all delights. They cannot dive out of a cloud, nor clap their wings in thunderous applause. They know no urge of seasons; they feel no kiss of sun, no lash of wind and weather, they live forever by not living at all."
From a Monument to the Pigeon

Aldo Leopold, 1947
Old 09-11-2004, 01:28 PM   #16
The Paradox

There is some significance to your arguement but the "paradox" is not only are we as humans being entirely and unrelentingly invasive we are dispersing animals from there indigenous localities and relocating them to areas where they may profit and survive but also are destroying off other species. For example the bullfrog in the west has destroyed entire populations of aquatic snakes, frogs, and turtles by there voracious appetites and for you to condemn Trey for saving a few animals that he passes on the road in their natural and steadily declining habitat, that would be killed by the next car, is a little sanctimonious and hippocritical. In fact if you really wanted to help out these populations you would do the same thing he is doing by successfully breeding them and releasing them back into the wild. I have worked with him before and Trey and his family release more animals by far than they sell and they are not in it for the profit, in fact they are entirely "biologically and environmentally" founded, working to improve the species by actions and not by "casting stones" from their PC's.
Old 09-12-2004, 12:51 AM   #17
Glenn Bartley
What do you plan on doing with the Box Turtles?
Trey Bell
i hope to get the females to drop and ill raise the youngens until i need to get rid of them. really pretty turtles-ill get some pictures posted of them. if this keeps up, ill name the "kennerly rd. specimens" and jack the price up 10 bucks or so.
I call them as I see them!

And if you would have read "all" of the posts you would have read this!

Overton Pratt
The right thing to do would be to pick up the animal and place it on the side of the road in the direction it was traveling.
And of course leaving the turtles in the road would do them no good, but taking "all" you find to sell, doesn't do them a bit of good! There chance for breeding and the continuation of their gene's into future populations end the moment they are removed from the wild. So in essence as a continuation of a species, they would have been better off if they "had" been left in the road.

But don't get me wrong I think it is fine to collect reptiles etc.... but in a responsible way! And taking every one you find is hardly responsible.
Old 09-20-2004, 04:19 PM   #18
box turtles

hey trey are you planning on head starting the young that these turtles produce. If that is your plan that is good. This would definetly increase the odds of box turtle survival. However, if you simply plan on selling all the young and never returning the adults to the wild then this could be bad for the population. Remember box turtles have a very small home range. Once a few adults are taken out of a certain area their is good chance the area will never have box turtles again. Please consider head starting the young and releasing them where you found the adults. Even if you sold half of your offspring and returned the rest that would help the population. Remember a turtle dead on the road is no different then a turtle sitting in a cage, as far as the population is concerned. I am not going to throw stones at you. I personally would not do what you are doing. I am not pushing my values and standards on you, but at least consider you local population of box turtles well being. Thanks for you time.

Join now to reply to this thread or open new ones for your questions & comments! FaunaClassifieds.com is the largest online community about Reptile & Amphibians, Snakes, Lizards and number one classifieds service with thousands of ads to look for. Registration is open to everyone and FREE. Click Here to Register!


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Albino Eastern Box Turtle? smart_ask Turtles & Tortoises Discussion Forum 12 09-28-2016 11:31 AM
Eastern Box Turtle TripleMoonsExotic Turtles & Tortoises Discussion Forum 9 11-11-2006 02:30 PM
Eastern box turtle Millerlite009 Turtles/Tortoises 0 09-13-2006 10:03 PM
Eastern Box Turtle joshdhensley Field Collecting/Observing 3 07-02-2006 06:44 PM

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:56 AM.

Ebates Coupons and Cash Back

Fauna Top Sites

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.3
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Page generated in 0.08958411 seconds with 9 queries
Content copyrighted ©2002-2018, FaunaClassifieds, LLC