Meet our 2018 Intern, Skyler!
My name is Skyler Klingshirn and I will be a senior at Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio this upcoming fall. I am an environmental science major with minors in marine science and biology. In Spring 2017, I was able to complete a semester abroad at the Duke University Marine Lab in Beaufort, NC. During this time, I took a course on the conservation and biology of sea turtles which sparked my interest in these beautiful animals. Through this course, I traveled to Puerto Rico where we did in water surveys of green sea turtles. We also went to St. Croix in the Virgin Islands to do night beach surveys of leatherback sea turtles where we were able to see a female leatherback lay her nest which was an amazing experience. Last summer I completed a research internship with Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute in Fort Pierce, Florida. I researched the virus that causes fibropapillomatosis, a disease that causes the growth of tumors in sea turtles. Through this internship, I learned a lot about research, genetics, and this disease all sea turtle species face. This summer I am super excited to be at Edisto Beach State Park to help out with loggerhead nesting surveys and also be able to help with educational programs to teach the public about sea turtles and how to help protect them.
Miss Murtle Helps our Shorebirds!
See below for a new video from Miss Murtle! We both got to help assist setting up the shorebird nesting habitat earlier this month. We are happy that our shorebirds will be protected now. Be sure to like and subscribe so you don't miss any future Murtle videos!
Have you ever been on one of our night walks? They are a lot of fun and you have the possibility to see a sea turtle! See the poster below for more information. This program requires advanced registration - so give us a call at the Environmental Learning Center.
Our First Three Nests!
We are so excited to not only have our first sea turtle nest of the summer but have our first three nests! Last night three sea turtles came ashore our state park beach to lay eggs. All three nests were left in situ as they were in a good location. We have collected data for each nest and have them roped off.
How many nests do you think we will have this summer? Our record is 240 back in 2016, perhaps this will be another record year?!
See below for more photos taken from the patrol this morning.
Llama Beach Rescue
The first nest has been recorded in South Carolina! It was found on May 8th on Daufuskie Island. We are still waiting for our first nest but it should be any day now.
This morning we had to rescue a llama from the marsh! It is sad that we have this toy littering our beach, however, it did give us some comic relief! Driving around with this llama in our golf cart sure made us laugh!
Stay tuned for the blog to find out when our first nest arrives.
Leatherback Sea Turtles
We have seen leatherback sea turtles off our beach for the past few weeks. It is always exciting to see them popping up for air. They are currently on their northward migration and are feeding on the cannonball jellyfish that are in our waters.
Below are a few photographs captured by Jerome Simmons, thanks for the photos!
I know everyone is excited for the return of our nesting loggerhead sea turtles, I definitely am. We have been on 3 patrols now and have yet to see any turtle activity, other than the very cool sand sculpture created by visitors to our state park beach. Stay tuned to the blog to hear about when our first nest arrives, it should be any day now. I have created a video showing the first morning patrol, check it out below. I announce in the video that I am going to try going "Plastic Free" during the nesting loggerhead season. What this means is that I am going to attempt to not purchase anything with plastic. It sounds like a tough thing to do as you look around in the grocery store and all you see are items packaged in plastic. I am excited to take on this challenge though and will be posting more video content to show how things are going. Stay tuned for plastic free living tips!
Miss Murtle is out with a new video, "Straws" A spoken word by Miss Murtle the Talkin' Turtle. She is excited to share her message on straws and hopes to inspire people to "stop sucking". Will you join Miss Murtle and say "NO" to straws or bring in a reusable?
Sea Turtle Biologist