Emys orbicularis is the most northerly‐breeding chelonian in the world, present in southern and central Europe, but absent from the British Isles at the present day. Mean July temperatures well in excess of 18d̀C appear necessary for the living species to breed successfully. In England records of E. orbicularis are now available from the Cromerian Hoxnian, Ipswichian and Flandrian temperate stages, suggesting mean July temperatures at least 2d̀C warmer than now. Most of the available material is of Ipswichian (= Eemian) age, spanning most of this temperate stage and indicating generally high summer temperatures even near the end. On the other hand there is only one English E. orbicularis of Flandrian age, dating from the climatic optimum, compared with numerous finds in southern Scandinavia, probably reflecting the prevalence of cooler and damper summers in the more oceanic northwest.
Boreas – Wiley
Published: Sep 1, 1979