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Turtle and Tortoise Newsletter, 2000, 1:23
© 2000 by Chelonian Research Foundation

Turtle and Tortoise Newsletter

Ashton Biodiversity Research & Preservation Institute

Ghislaine Guyot
Research Director, Ashton Biodiversity Research & Preservation Institute,
PMB 331, 5745 SW 75th St., Gainesville, Fl 32608, USA;
Fax. 352-495-7433; E-mail: GhGuyot@aol.com

The Ashton Biodiversity Research & Preservation Institute is a non-profit organization incorporated in September, 1999. It is located at Finca de la Tortuga Biological Reserve, on the Brooksville Ridge, 15 miles west of Gainesville, Florida. The Institute is devoted to promoting, supporting and providing opportunities for research and management on biodiversity. In particular, it will contribute to the development of knowledge in conservation biology on endangered species and in sustainable use of natural resources. Along with research the Institute has at its core, the education and training of students of all ages from school students to graduate students and professionals on wildlife preservation and management. A special emphasis is given to turtles and tortoises.

The Board of Directors include herpetologists and ecologists representing different expertise: Patricia S. Ashton and Ray E. Ashton, Jr.(Ashton, Ashton and Associates, Florida); Dave Collins (Tennessee Aquarium, Chattanooga, Tennessee); Elliott Jacobson (College of Veterinary Medicine, Univ. Florida); Henry R. Mushinsky (Dept. Biology, Univ. South Florida); Peter C. H. Pritchard (Chelonian Research Institute, Florida). Itís research director, Dr. Ghislaine Guyot from France studied the ecology and conservation biology of Testudo hermanni in France and rare side-necked turtles, Pseudemydura umbrina and Chelodina oblonga, in western Australia. She is here on a post-doctorial position jointly sponsored by the Institute and the University of South Florida.

Two major projects which are on-going include a long term study on relocation and behavior of gopher tortoises, Gopherus polyphemus, and the development of long term management strategies for maintaining highly endangered species of savannah dwelling tortoises. Currently this cooperative study includes the use of the Indian Star Tortoise, Geochelone elegans, and the radiated tortoise, Geochelone radiata, to develop management protocols.

To obtain further information about involvement with the Institute, graduate studies, internships or cooperative research possibilities, contact the author at the above address, fax, or email address, or call 352-495-7449.