Gopher Tortoise
The Gopher Tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus)
Habitat:  Preferred habitat is sandhill, dry prairies, coastal dunes, flatwoods, or other
upland habitats with a high density and diversity of herbaceous ground cover.
Animals that may use a burrow:   Gopher frog, Gopher cricket, Gopher tick, Florida mouse,
Fence Swift, Mole skink, Greenhouse frog, Wolf spider, Diamondback rattlesnake, Pygmy
rattlesnake, Southern hognose, Black racer, Coachwip and Crown snake, and Indigo snake.
Permits:   "Incidental take" is no longer permitted, under new FFWCC Management Plan and
Permitting Guidelines all Gopher Tortoises (GTs) must now be relocated or avoided.
Recipient sites:  Recipient sites have to take proper care of the site to promote healthy
tortoises - which includes burning of the site and monitoring additional relocations.  There is
a fee associated with each tortoise taken to a recipient site to help with the upkeep of the
site.
Process of relocation:  An environmental scientist walks the site in "transects
" to locate and mark burrows.  The burrows are marked with tape as well as on a handheld GPS.  The
data is then transferred to a computer and used to make various aerials maps like the example map
seen here. 
Example Features and Results Map:   
 
                      
Example MGC Projects Involving Gopher Tortoises: 
Citrus County Emergency Operations Center (EOC)
Rainbow Springs Tract A
Citrus Springs Elementary A
Meadowcrest WWTP expansion
Links: