Threatened Tortoises Released into the Mississippi Wilds

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By JANET McCONNAUGHEY
Associated Press

Scientists who have been raising threatened burrowing tortoises at a Mississippi National Guard camp to give them a head start in the wild are trying something new.

They’re raising a few gopher tortoises to sexual maturity before releasing them. The Nature Conservancy and the National Guard released their first seven adult-sized gopher tortoises Wednesday at Camp Shelby.

Most had been raised for six years but were as big as those that live in Mississippi’s wilds for 18 to 25 years.

Project leader Jim Lee of The Nature Conservancy says turtle size and sexual maturity are closely related.

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9/12/2020 11:38:46 PM (GMT -5:00)

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