Monday, October 1, 2012

2012 Terrapin Nesting Season

The end of the nesting season was on September 25, 2012 with over 500 hatchlings recovered, meaning a 75% hatch success rate at Sedge.  We also outfitted 5 terrapins with depth and temperature sensors that will (hopefully) be recovered in 2013.  Thanks again as we had a great yeat with terrific interns and volunteers.

It is hatching time!  We have recovered over 240 hatchlings as of August 27, 2012 out of 28 nests.  It is a good year so far.  Thanks Jillian, Dylan, Angelica, Estefany, Ryan and Juliet and helping with the hatchling recovery.

                                           Check out our hatchlings that we measure and
                                            release back to the marshes on N. Sedge!

At Sedge, we have moved and protected over 600 eggs with our last female terrapin disgging a nest on Tuesday July 17, 2012.  As we wind down the nesting season, hatching and emergence will be in the near future.  Thanks to Lauren, who coordinated the nest relocation project this summer. 

June 22, 2012 we fitted three female terrapins with temperature and depth sensors to determine annual exposure in terms of temperatures and depths that a female would encounter at Barnegat Bay.  We fitted old reliable, AHPW, along with BHIO and NPQW all funded by Exelon Energy Corporation, Oyster Creek.  Nesting season is going very well with 26 known female nests and 6 nests from unknown females.  This puts us at approximately 451 eggs protected as of June 22.  I would like to thank our awesome interns and volunteers for their work...
Lauren, Jackie, Juliet, Ryan, Lisa, Dylan and Jillian!  As of June 30, 2012, we are at 500 eggs and we outfitted terrapin AJVW with a logger (see picture below...).  Her datalogger was sponsored by the students at Cedar Creek Elementary School in Lacey Township as part of their generous donation to Project Terrapin. 

Terrapin code AJVW with transmitter on back left carapace

On Saturday May 26, our first female terrapin was captured on N. Sedge Island (code ACIW).  On Wednesday May 30, we found our first nest and marked two more female terrapins.  We welcome Lauren Cruz from the University of Delaware as a summer student researcher (see below).  Lauren is studying the effects of coastal upwelling events and how the reduced temperatures brought on by upwelling may impact nesting frequency.  We have a new hatchery on the Island as well!  On June 2, our familiar nester, code AHPW, came back to the Island for her tenth consecutive year.  We hope to see her in two weeks to fit her with a temperature and depth datalogger to determine what conditions she is exposed for a year.  We also had a female terrapin nest June 3 that was 2007 grams!  The largest ever measured on N. Sedge Island!

See our new hatchery below... Thanks Tony Raniero for the easy access design and look!

Lauren Cruz installing a "human traffic counter" as part of her terrapin nesting study on N. Sedge Island


  1. Wonderful blog & good post.Its really helpful for me, awaiting for more new post. Keep Blogging!

    Nautical Science

  2. This is a great blog for our children to use in their MARE studies in Lacey Township. They will be so thrilled to see where their coins went in the fund raiser for Project Terrapin! Please keep blogging!

  3. We would love some of the real-time data published on this blog. Our latest science standards encourage our students to use real data in the classroom. Any possibility of posting some of the tracking movements?