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Trophic ecology of Mesoclemmys vanderhaegei (Testudines, Chelidae) in silvicultural landscapes through stable isotope methodology

Grant number: 14/22035-3
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2015
Effective date (End): December 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Ecology - Applied Ecology
Principal Investigator:Thiago Simon Marques
Grantee:Luciana Mulero Beloto
Host Institution: Centro de Energia Nuclear na Agricultura (CENA). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Piracicaba , SP, Brazil


Mesoclemmys vanderhaegei present wide geographical distribution in South America; however few studies have been developed in relation to their ecology and natural history. The occurrence of the species in Brazil seems to be associated with the Cerrado domain that has been extensively replaced by agricultural areas in recent decades. However, M. vanderhaegei has been found in disturbed areas, making knowledge of strategies that this species uses to survive in these environments crucial for its conservation. The expansion of agricultural areas brings new elements to the landscape composition which altered the availability and distribution of resources, and can change drastically the intraspecific interactions (eg ontogenetic and sexual). In this context, the methodology of stable isotopes is a key tool because may provide an integrated measure of both assimilation of food resources as the habitat use. Thus, this study aims to examine the trophic ecology of M. vanderhaegei in silvicultural landscape through the methodology that is based on the determination of stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen.

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