A lot has been happening over the winter and spring months. The big news is that we are involved in several diamondback terrapin projects (Malaclemys terrapin). First, we are working with collaborators at the Brevard Zoo, Department of Environmental Protection Southeast Aquatic Preserves and the Florida Institute of Technology (FIT) to monitor terrapin populations in the Indian River Lagoon as there is little information regarding terrapins in the estuary and these brackish water turtles are facing an uncertain future throughout their range.
The second is we have two diamondback terrapins on permanent display at the FIT Marine Lab in Vero Beach. These post hatchling terrapins were confiscated by the US Fish and Wildlife Service in Alaska, along with 210 other turtles. They were being illegally shipped out of the country. For various reasons they cannot be returned to the wild so they have become ambassadors for education. The two we recently obtained had been sick for months with a shell infection, but they were nursed back to health by the good people at the Anchorage Museum.
So if you are in the area drop by the Vero Beach Marine Lab and see Baked and Alaska, our two incredibly cool diamondback terrapins. Also, stay tuned to our website as we will be announcing news of our upcoming sea turtle walks this summer.