Monday, October 19, 2009

The Turtles (and the Monitors) Return to San Diego Bay!

After a summer full of environmental monitoring and consulting at my new job here in San Diego, I'm excited to be joining NOAA scientists again out in the South San Diego Bay - looking for our green sea turtles once more! We'll start the 2009-2010 monitoring season in November, and are eager to see what the turtles have in store for us this year. Will we catch fewer than last year? More? Will we find more young turtles? Can we get some GPS tags to stay on longer? Will Wrinklebutt make an appearance?!

And just to clarify the title of this post, the sea turtles don't all necessarily leave San Diego Bay in the summer. If you revisit the past few blog posts, you'll recall that the turtles are simply in different parts of the Bay, and many of them do seem to venture to other parts of San Diego (I know some made their way to La Jolla Shores this summer!) - but they meander where they like, as this is the life of a sea turtle! And besides, the warm summer waters help facilitate the growth of some intense algae, making the standard turtle-capture methods quite difficult to execute, so the scientists don't attempts to capture the turtles during the warm months.

(Photo: NMFS Permit #1591)

But now fall is in the air - and despite the 80 degree weather - the red leaves outside my window confirm that the temperatures will be cooling down, and it's almost time to go "turtling" again!

This fall and winter I will continue to post updates to this blog (much more frequently than this summer!) to share with all my San Diego Sea Turtle friends what the turtles and their dedicated researchers are up to this year.

And so, to keep us all interested, I leave you with some photos from last year, and invite you to review the findings from last year's monitoring season - and to wish me luck as I work on making the final edits with my NOAA advisor to our paper we're planning on publishing soon!

The Story of San Diego's Sea Turtles - 2008-2009 Season

Part 1: Status of Green Sea Turtles in the Eastern Pacific

Part 2: Green Sea Turtles in San Diego Bay

Part 3: Turtle "Catchability" Appears to be Declining - What Does This Mean?

Part 4: Why is "Catchability" Declining? What Is Changing?

Part 5: The Likely Explanation

Part 6: What Will Happen Once The Power Plant Shuts Down?

Photos: NMFS Permit #1591

Friday, September 4, 2009

An oldie but a goodie

The San Diego sea turtles have gotten some new attention from the press! And when it comes to conservation and awareness - this is a good thing.

Issue 3 - Spring 2008 of Wetpixel (www.wetpixelquarterly.com) had a great article "The Green Giants of San Diego: Ancient mariners defy industrial chaos and urban sprawl" by Christopher Bahnsen and shared with the underwater photography and conservation world, some of the work NOAA scientists have been doing on this local population of San Diego sea turtles.

This month, the article has been picked up by EMagazine.com. The slightly different twist on the story "Saving the Green Giants: California's Supersized Turtles Raise Questions about Altered Habitats" also by Bahnsen, talks about much of the research (if you've followed this blog) that we've been looking into.

Conservation, especially in an urban setting, relies on people's willingness to protect natural resources. From charismatic creatures like sea turtles and dolphins, to appealing seafood like halibut and lobster, to the unglamours habitats of marshes and seagrass - they are all interconnected and depend on human choices for their continued existance. Articles like this one, that highlight the hard work being done by scientists on the front-line of conservation, help to increase awareness of habitats, creatures, and even economic resources that may otherwise go unnoticed.

I applaud the efforts of those who help to spread the word and engage the public and decision makers alike. For all the laws in place to protect our resources, it still comes down to individuals making small choices that cumulatively have a large impact. I applaud those business owners too who go the extra mile to protect the resources around them and strive to improve their own business practices. Efforts underway to align incentives with conservation must continue for marshes and seagrass beds to persist, because those habitats are where juvenile halibut and lobster grow into the food we enjoy eating, and it is where childhood favorites like green sea turtles eat and grow in an effort to avoid extinction.

(Author out kayaking the SD Bay for Operation Clean Sweep - see the South Bay Power Plant in the distance. Also discovered a wonderful saltmarsh with amazing birds, crabs, snails, gobies & more!)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Part 6: What will happen once the power plant shuts down?

The big question of many who have read this story: What will happen once the power plant shuts down?

At this point, a simple answer is best: the turtles will most likely be just fine - and scientists will continue monitoring them to make sure that will be the case.

Sea turtles have existed on Earth for over 100 million years, and the warm water ceasing to be discharged from the SBPP will change the habitat of that part of the South San Diego Bay; but there will still be suitable habitats in the bay for the turtles.

What we might see is a change in where we see the turtles, and when we see the turtles.

If the turtles change location, this would be a spatial shift; if the turtles change the time of year we see them, that would be a seasonal shift.

A likely spatial shift:
For the past 30 years, the sea turtles of San Diego have been highly concentrated in the discharge channel (see red section to the left) (Dutton & McDonald, 1992). But once the power plant shuts down, the draw to that particular area of the bay will be eliminated, and the turtles may be just as likely to be in other shallow-water areas of the south bay - not just the discharge channel.

A possible seasonal shift:
When the power plant is operating, the water temperature during the winter stays warmer than it would naturally. By eliminating the warm-water source, the temperature of the bay during the winter may be too cool. In response, the turtles may avoid the San Diego Bay during the winter, stay in shallow areas where the water is warmer, or we may even witness the turtles exhibiting "hibernation" as has been observed in lagoons of Baja (Felger et al., 1976; Hochscheid et al., 2007).

Likewise, when the power plant is operating, the water during the summer becomes too warm. We may begin to observe the turtles in the bay more during summer months, and less during winter months.

(See image of scenarios of seasonal shifts. Top row: Winter and Summer WITH operating power plant. Bottom row: Winter and Summer WITHOUT operating power plant. Icons represent possible shifts in turtle distribution.)

Continued research on this population of sea turtles will help answer these questions and ensure that this endangered species is protected for generations of San Diegans to enjoy.



Cited works:

Dutton, P. & D. McDonald. 1992. Ultrasonic Tracking of Sea Turtles In San Diego Bay. In J.I. Richardson and T.H. Richardson (Compilers), Proceedings of the Twelfth Annual Workshop on Sea Turtle Biology and Conservation (pp. 218-221). Washington DC: NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-SEFC-361.

Felger, R., K. Cliffton, & P. Regal. 1976. Winter Dormancy in Sea Turtles: Independent Discovery and Exploitation in the Gulf of California by Two Local Cultures. Science , 191 (4224), 283-285.

Hochscheid, S., F. Bentivegna, M. Bradai & G. Hays. 2007. Overwintering behaviour in sea turtles: dormancy is optional. Marine Ecology Progress Series, (340) 287-298.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Part 5: The Likely Explanation

Picking up from Part 4, if the same number of turtles are still in the San Diego Bay, and they are not actively avoiding our nets, then it is possible that the turtles have changed their distribution in the south part of the SD Bay. That is, they may have changed where they hang out (rest, sleep, eat) - which could explain why fewer turtles are being caught by NOAA scientists when the nets stay in the same place but the turtles are elsewhere in the bay. Here I explore this likely explanation for the turtle's apparent decline in catchability.

Green sea turtles are tropical animals, preferring warm water in the 70s (F). During the winter, the Pacific ocean along San Diego's coast can get quite cool, dropping into the 50s. During this time, the water in the San Diego Bay also drops, typically in the 50s and 60s - making the bay's water a bit cooler than the tropical sea turtles might prefer.

However, the South Bay Power Plant (SBPP), when it is running, discharges warmed water into the south end of the SD Bay, which creates a pocket of warmer water - sometimes up to 20 degrees (F), but usually closer to 8-10 degrees (F) warmer than the rest of the surrounding water. This discharge water (see figure to the left for representation) creates a warm-water refuge for the sea turtles, especially during the winter months (December-March) when the bay's water would otherwise be quite cold.

(The green line represents a general typical daily patters of previously tagged sea turtles - Seminoff, Lyon & Eguchi, 2006. The green circles represent where the nets are typically set and where turtles are known to feed.)

If the power plant is operating at levels lower than historical operating levels, then less warm water is being discharged into the bay. Operating since 1960 and scheduled to be shut down in the next few years, the SBPP uses dated technology and is gradually being phased-out. The impact of this policy decision on the population of sea turtles is that the warm water refuge (the pocket of warm water created by the plant’s discharge) is becoming smaller and its presence is becoming less predictable.

This means that the turtles have less incentive to concentrate in the discharge channel where NOAA scientists have always observed the turtles. The turtles have likely found other areas around the south end of the San Diego Bay that have shallow and therefore warmer water that also suit their needs. This is the likely explanation for why the catchability of these green sea turtles has been declining in recent years.

Stay tuned: Part 6 will go into more detail about the impacts of the SBPP shutting down and what it means for the local San Diego Sea Turtles!

Photo: NMFS Permit #1591
NOAA scientists attaching tags to green sea turtles captured in the discharge channel of the SBPP.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Part 4: Why is "catchability" declining? What is changing?


Previously we noted that it seems as though the green sea turtles in the San Diego Bay are getting harder to catch, see the number of turtles expected to be caught for each of the past 7 years in the chart to the left.

Three possible explanations for this were presented:

1) The population of sea turtles in the SD Bay is getting smaller
2) The turtles are changing their behavior and are adjusting & avoiding the nets
3) The distribution of the sea turtles in the SD Bay is changing

So, now to take a closer look at these possible reasons for the decreasing catchability. First, we found that the population of resident sea turtles in the San Diego Bay is not getting smaller, it is, in fact, remaining stable. There are approximately 60 green turtles - including new "fresh from the open ocean" juveniles - that feed on the eelgrass in the SD Bay (J. Seminoff & T. Eguchi, pers. comm., 2009). Most of these turtles are thought to be part of the breeding population from Mexico, and they are endangered. Given that the population is stable and NOT decreasing, this is not the reason for the turtles becoming harder to catch.

Second, it is very unlikely that the turtles are actively avoiding the nets used by NOAA scientists to catch the turtles during these monitoring days in the field. The monofiliment that these live-entanglement nets are made from is nearly invisible underwater, plus, the water in the discharge channel (where all of the nets are set) is very murky and has poor visibility. Therefore, this is also a very unlikely reason for the declining catchability.

Finally, it is possible that the turtles have changed their distribution in the south part of the SD Bay - that is, they may have changed where they hang out (rest, sleep, eat) - which could explain why fewer turtles are being caught by NOAA scientists when the nets stay in the same place but the turtles are elsewhere in the bay.

The next post, Part 5, will explore this likely explanation for the turtle's apparent decline in catchability.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Learn all about San Diego's Sea Turtles: This Thursday, May 28th, 6pm


Tomorrow evening, Thursday, May 28th, at 6:00pm, I will speak at Pro Peninsula's downtown location about San Diego's own sea turtles, their situation in the San Diego Bay, and what it means for the people of San Diego.

Once the South Bay Power Plant is removed, which it will be in the next few years, the south part of the San Diego Bay's ecosystem will change. How will this affect the endangered green sea turtles that are attracted to the warm, tropical-like water that is discharged by the power plant? Join me tomorrow to learn more! (Hint: we will still have sea turtles in the bay once the power plant is gone...)

And once the plant has been removed, the City of Chula Vista and all the residents of San Diego County will have a wonderful opportunity to develop this bayfront land as they see fit. A large range of development options are possible, and sustainable and thoughtful planning CAN make the South Bay setting one that hosts a healthy and diverse ecosystem and wildlife, and at the same time stimulates the local economy and benefits the community.

One great opportunity is increased education for our local youth. Pro Peninsula's education program, Ocean Connectors, is one great example. Frances Kinney, Education Coordinator, will share more about Ocean Connectors and the sea turtles of San Diego Bay.

Join us tomorrow, to learn more about these great ocean creatures, and how you can be involved in protecting these animals and deciding the future of the south bay.

To learn more, visit Pro Peninsula or UCSD's Scripps Institution of Oceanography's Center for Marine Biodiversity and Conservation (see Announcements), hope to see you there!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Part 3: Turtle "Catchability" Appears to be Declining - What Does This Mean?

Photo: NOAA SWFSC scientists search for sea turtles in San Diego Bay

First studied in the 1970's, the population of resident San Diego sea turtles has been closely monitored by scientists. Today, researchers from NOAA's Southwest Fisheries Science Center (SWFSC) and other local universities are supported, largely by the Unified Port of San Diego, and monitor the health, behavior, and well-being of this group of endangered green sea turtles.

In looking at the total number of turtles caught by researchers each year (refer to April 20th blog on how NOAA researchers "catch" the turtles), we noticed that in the past few years, the turtles seemed to be getting harder to catch. Meaning, it took a longer time in recent years, to catch the same number of turtles when compared to previous years.

For example, during the 2002-2003 monitoring season, which usually runs from late October to early May, SWFSC researchers would expect to catch around 4 turtles every day they went out to monitor the turtles. This is often referred to as the Catch-Per-Unit-Effort, or CPUE, and is a common way that fisheries are managed and assessed. So, for the 2002-2003, the CPUE was just over 4 turtles per day.

When you compare that to this year's CPUE, you notice that it was much harder to catch 4 turtles. In fact, the 2008-2009 CPUE was just over 1 turtle per day! I will discuss more about the over all "catchability trend" in a future post, but for now, I will wrap up with the three possible reasons why the "catchability" of the sea turtles in the San Diego Bay is declining.

1- the population of sea turtles is getting smaller
2- the turtles are learning how to avoid the nets that scientists use to catch the turtles
3- the turtles are more spread out in the bay than they used to be.

It turns out that neither #1 or #2 are correct, but that #3 could be part of the explanation.

Stay tuned to the nest post to learn more about these three reasons!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Part 2: Green Sea Turtles in San Diego Bay


The Eastern Green Sea Turtle, Chelonia mydas, is an endangered species, and while normally found in tropical regions such as Hawaii and Mexico, a population of resident green turtles is found year-round in the San Diego Bay. These animals usually spend most of their time in the southern section of the San Diego Bay, especially near the warm-water effluent (discharge) of the large South Bay Power Plant (see map).

A large earth structure separates where the power plant's intake pipes are from the discharge pipes. This land is now the Chula Vista Wildlife Reserve, and is the primary reason why there have NEVER been any green sea turtles caught in or on the power plant's intake pipes. The turtles are frequently seen on the south side of the land structure, where the warm discharge water creates a warmer-than-normal habitat (see the red area on map). The South San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge includes the salt evaporation ponds at the far south end of the bay, and provides additional protection to the sea turtles by requiring slower boat speeds for example.

First studied in detail by graduate student Margie Stinson in the 1980s, the population of San Diego Bay turtles continues to be monitored (Stinson, 1984). Constant observations by NOAA’s NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center and other researchers have added to the body of knowledge on this particular population (Dutton, 1990) (NOAA, NMFS SWFSC, 2008).

The image above was created in Google Earth. The yellow, orange and green coloration show different habitats in the South Bay and was created by the Unified Port of San Diego. Other images added by me include the red coloration depicts, the estimated warm-water plume generated by the power plant, estimated to extend about 5000 ft, to the end of the barge extending from the most western end of the Chula Vista Wildlife Reserve, and the turtle icon show some of the areas that turtles frequently visit.

Explore more of the San Diego Bay with the Unified Port of San Diego's new Google Earth tour of the Bay's natural resources


Sources:

Dutton, P. ( 1990). Sea turtles present in San Diego Bay. In T. J. Richardson (Ed.), Proceedings of the Tenth Annual Workshop on Sea Turtle Biology and Conservation (pp. 139-141). Washington DC: NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-SEFC-278.

NOAA, NMFS SWFSC. (2008, May 7). Marine Turtle Program. Retrieved December 1, 2008, from NOAA, NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center: http://swfsc.noaa.gov/prd-turtles.aspx

Stinson, M. (1984). Biology of sea turtles in San Diego Bay, California, and in the north eastern Pacific Ocean. San Diego State University. San Diego: Master's Thesis.

More infomation: State of the Bay Report.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Part 1: Status of Green Sea Turtles in the Eastern Pacific


Of the six (or seven, depending on who you ask!) species of sea turtles alive today, the green sea turtle, known as Chelonia mydas, is the species found in the San Diego Bay. The population of green turtles found in these waters of the Eastern Pacific Ocean, are Endangered and therefore monitored and protected according to federal law. The group of green sea turtles found in this region of the ocean (from California through Mexico and even South America) have been impacted by harvest (of both turtles and eggs) fishery bycatch, entanglement and ingestion of debris, and even boat collisions. Over the last 30-40 years, this population of green sea turtles has significantly declined.

Common among all sea turtles species, the eastern pacific green sea turtles nest in one location, but eat, or forage, the rest of the year in another location. San Diego bay provides food for the sea turtles who migrate to the central coast of Mexico to nest. Slow growing and long lived, green sea turtles may live to be over 70 years old, and do not reproduce until they are 25-30 years old. Even then, females breed only once every two to three years.

All habitats utilized by the green sea turtles are important, but those habitat known to support either feeding or breeding are of particular significance to the protection and recovery of these endangered animals.

Next, Part 2: Green Sea Turtles in the San Diego Bay


Source:
National Marine Fisheries Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 1998. Recovery Plan for U.S. Pacific Populations of the East Pacific Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas).
National Marine Fisheries Service, Silver Spring, MD.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Birch Aquarium Staff Gets to Learn More About San Diego Sea Turtles


On May 6th, I was fortunate enough to chat with some of the staff and volunteers from the Birch Aquarium's education program and share with them what type of research I have been doing with the sea turtles in the San Diego Bay - and about the social, political, and even economic impacts of the research.

Given my background in marine education, it was a great chance to come full-circle and make that connection between why research is conducted, and what it means at the social and political levels - not just at the scientific level.

It was a great way for research and its social implications to be shared and discussed with a group of people who regularly interface with the public and share the wonders of our oceans with kids and adults everyday.

After 30 minutes of hearing about the following aspects from me:
  • What turtles we have in California waters,
  • How these endangered animals are regulated and protected,
  • What NOAA scientists do when monitoring the turtles in the San Diego Bay,
  • What potential changes are expected once the power plant in the south end of the bay shuts down and stops discharging warm water which, especially during the winter months, creates a warm water refuge for the Eastern Pacific Green Sea Turtles,
  • How the entire situation presents a potentially wonderful opportunity for citizens in San Diego - considering the expected changes that will occur in the South Bay once the large power plant is removed in the next few years, and
  • That future development CAN embrace the endangered sea turtles, and the entire ecosystem of the South Bay, as a BENEFIT, it does not have to be a burden planning around a protected species.
There were wonderful questions and discussions about:
  • General sea turtle biology and behaviors
  • How many sea turtles are in the San Diego Bay? (Answer: around 60)
  • Specifics on what shifts may be expected from the sea turtles once the power plant closes
  • Education and volunteer opportunities for SD students, residents and visitors
  • and much more!

The big question: will the sea turtles stay in San Diego?

Answer: The good news on all of the initial research is that we expect the turtles to still visit us in San Diego even once the warm water from the power plant is gone. The south end of the San Diego Bay will continue to provide a safe and warm place for the sea turtles to visit and the eelgrass which they enjoy eating will still be available - even if it means they just change the time of the year they are around, and where they spend most of their time.

Many thanks again for the chance to talk with the staff of this wonderful organization! And to those who would like to join me for my next talk - see below for details on the May 28th talk at Pro Peninsula!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Come learn about San Diego's Sea Turtles! May 28th, 6pm

Come join me, and Educator Coordinator Frances Kinney of Pro Peninsula's Ocean Connectors program, on Thursday evening, May 28th, to learn more about the endangered Eastern Pacific Green Sea Turtles!

Located at Pro Peninsula in downtown San Diego, we'll share the research being done to monitor these charismatic turtles, and how these findings help to inform policy decisions - especially in regards to the South Bay Power Plant and future development of the Chula Vista bayfront - and how the turtles and the research also serve as a tool to engage the local students!

Marine turtles, like these in San Diego Bay, provide an opportunity to increase the social benefits of local natural ecosystems and resources - come join us on May 28th to find out more!

Visit www.propeninsula.org for more details!


Video: Taken by author in the Caribbean. The behavior of this green sea turtle surfacing to breathe and then returning to the ocean floor to rest is very similar to the behavior we expect from the green sea turtles in San Diego Bay. Much of the day they are eating, resting, and breathing at the surface as needed.

video

Friday, April 24, 2009

Sea Turtles + Eelgrass = Healthy Environment

Photo: Sea turtle foraging (eating) in the Caribbean.

Sea turtles in the San Diego Bay seem to mostly feed on eelgrass which is found in throughout shallower parts of the bay. In the southern part of the bay, south of Sweetwater Marsh, where the turtles spend most of their time, the eelgrass seems to grow in shallow areas ranging from a depth of 0-7 feet. Called "eelgrass beds", these sea turtle feeding areas are very important habitats for other animals living in and around the bay.

Young fish, crabs, lobsters and more use the eelgrass beds to grow before moving on to other habitats like the open ocean. When sea turtles eat the eelgrass, they act like "lawnmowers" and keep the beds healthy and growing. By maintaining these important habitats, fish and other animals in the water can use the eelgrass as protection from predators, a food source, and a nursery. Fish found in the south bay include California halibut, Spotted & Barred Sand Bass, Striped Mullet and Kelpfish - among many others.

Eelgrass also helps keep the water clear! Because eelgrass can grow to be a few feet in length, it can slow down movements in the water that might otherwise stir up the fine sand on the bottom that makes the water murky. And because it has roots - just like normal grass - it helps trap and hold down the sand and other fine sediments.

Finally, if the water is too polluted, the eelgrass cannot grow. During the 1940s-1960s, eelgrass beds shrank and pretty much disappeared as a result of marine pollution. But when changes began to occur to improve the quality of the bay's water (like eliminating sewage deposition in 1963) the eelgrass began to grow again.

So, when we have sea turtles in the bay, we know we have eelgrass in the bay, and that the ecosystem is doing alright!

Happy Earth Day, everyone!


Key Reference: The San Diego Bay Integrated Natural Resources Management Plan (INRMP)

Monday, April 20, 2009

Since the sea turtles in the San Diego Bay don't come out of the water, how do scientists study them?


Sea turtles, as their name implies, are marine animals and spend almost ALL of their time in the ocean. The exception is when females nest on beaches, or when individuals bask, or rest, on the sand to warm up - this is common in places like Hawai'i, especially where there are not too many disturbances, like people or pets. But in San Diego, the turtles stay in the water all the time, they only eat here, they don't nest or breed here. So this can make it difficult for scientists to study this groups of sea turtles.

What researchers do instead, is use large nets, designed specifically to capture but not harm the sea turtles. And because green sea turtles are endangered and are protected by the Endangered Species Act, researchers have permits and use special techniques when working with the turtles. Always on the water and watching the nets, researchers bring the caught turtles into the small research boat, and then bring the sea turtles onto shore. A typical "exam" done by the scientists includes weighing and measuring the turtle, taking samples for DNA and contaminant testing, and tagging the turtle so its movement can be monitored.

More information coming soon on the different ways San Diego's sea turtles are tagged and tracked.

When all the information about the turtles has been recorded, the nets are removed from the water, and the turtles are released back into the bay where they were found.

This type of information is especially important in light of near-future bayfront development that will be taking place along the south bay once the power plant is shut down. More coming soon on how this research impacts San Diego residents too!

For more pictures, on how the turtles are caught, weighed and measured, visit NOAA's website: http://swfsc.noaa.gov/textblock.aspx?Division=PRD&ParentMenuId=212&id=4378

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

What does the South Bay Power Plant have to do with Sea Turtles?

Photo: NMFS Permit # 1591

Eastern Pacific Green Sea Turtles live in warm water areas of the Pacific Ocean including the San Diego Bay. Eelgrass, a favorite food of green sea turtles, grows in the bay and is also a sign of a healthy and diverse ecosystem that can support young fish, crabs, lobster and more! You can even rent kayaks and paddle around the south end of the bay and see a sea turtle popping up its head to breathe! The power plant at the end of the bay discharges warm water that the turtles like to visit – they are often seen resting at the “jacuzzi”!

The South Bay Power Plant, scheduled to be taken off-line in the next few years, will then no longer discharge warm water into the Bay. Sea turtles are endangered animals, protected by the Endangered Species Act, and to understand the impacts of these policy changes, scientists study San Diego’s sea turtles and the Bay’s environment.

Population remaining stable
Location
of sea turtles different

Movement
patterns changing

Behaviors
are slightly different

Sea turtles are not harmed

Come join me at a local talk, or email/post comments to learn more!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Come learn about San Diego's Sea Turtles! End of May!

I will be giving multiple presentations around San Diego, to tell the neat story about these ancient reptiles that live in our backyard!

The final talk I will be giving will be held at the end of May, together with Pro Peninsula. Stay tuned for more details.

If you are from a school, nature or environmental group and would like to arrange a presentation at your facility for April-May - please contact me, as this will be for offered during April and May only.

Learn more about Pro Peninsula too at: http://www.propeninsula.org/

Monday, April 6, 2009

Interested in learning about San Diego's Sea Turtles?

As part of my Capstone project for my Masters', I will be making multiple presentations and informal talks to help increase the awareness about the research going on to learn about these great creatures in San Diego, and how these turtles can actually help our local community, while we can also help protect these endangered animals and many, many more animals and resources that live in our coastal and open ocean habitats.

I will be announcing the dates, times and locations of these talks very soon. Check back to the blog to learn more, or follow SDSeaTurtles on Twitter to get updates on San Diego's Sea Turtles and up coming talks.

Questions and Comments? Post below, or send an email to me at: SDSeaTurtles@gmail.com

Did you know that there are sea turtles in San Diego?!

Most people, even life-long San Diegans, are unaware of these amazing creatures living right in our back yard!

This population of Eastern Pacific Green Sea Turtles have been studied by scientists since 1990.

Stay tuned to learn more about the research taking place to learn more about these incredible marine animals, and how their well-being can actually provide many benefits to those of us land-dwellers living and vacationing in San Diego.