Posts Tagged 'turtle conservation'

Thoughtful Thursdays: Local Students Release Their Terrapins!

Since September, students from 32 schools across Maryland have cared for baby turtles in their classrooms. Through the National Aquarium’s Terrapins in the Classroom program, hatchling diamondback terrapins are collected from Poplar Island in late summer and placed in partner schools. Throughout the year, students gain basic husbandry skills, collect growth data, and learn about the natural history of the Maryland state reptile.

“This is a once in a school-time experience,” said Andrew Hiller, a 5th grader from Naval Academy Primary School.

terrapin release

Thanks to the student’s dutiful care, the terrapins more than doubled in size and were ready to be released! Students and teachers took a boat ride to the island and a tour of the wetlands where the terrapins hatched. After carefully selecting a spot on the edge of the wetland, the students said goodbye to their terrapins and released them into the water.

“It was pretty exciting, letting it go. Even though it was nice having it, it was good to see it go have its own life,” said Matthew Szakmeister, a 2nd grader from Bushy Park Elementary School.

diamondback terrapin

Caring for, learning about, and releasing these turtles creates a unique and important connection between students and the natural world. Through this hands-on approach to conservation, our program hopes to inspire life-long environmental stewardship!

You can do your part to help diamondback terrapins by practicing turtle-safe crabbing this summer! Watch this video to learn how!

Thoughtful Thursdays: Loggerhead Head Start Program

Baby loggerhead turtle

As part of our Amazing Experiences Sweepstakes, National Aquarium in Washington, DC is giving one lucky winner the opportunity to name and have a behind-the-scenes “meet and greet” with our newest baby loggerhead turtle, arriving this month!

Enter to Win Now!

In order to help save these magnificent sea turtles from extinction, National Aquarium participates in the Loggerhead Head Start Program, run by the North Carolina Aquarium in Pine Knoll, that gives these baby sea turtles a better chance at survival in the wild.

Sea turtle hatchlings found stranded far from the ocean, spend time in aquariums where they can safely grow. After being given a clean bill of health and an extra boost of nutrition, they are tagged and released back to the ocean!

Baby loggerhead turtle

Baby loggerheads, like this one, spend their time exploring our Gray’s Reef exhibit before being released into the wild!

Sea turtles have a challenging life. Most weighing just 20 grams at birth, they face many natural predators both on the sandy beaches where they hatch and in the oceans where they dwell. Because of their low survival rate, they have been classified as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.

After a two years of growth, National Aquarium staff returns them to North Carolina for release. Eventually, these turtles could weigh up to 200 pounds!

So – Want a chance to meet our newest turtle? 

There are five great ways to be entered to win! 

Click here to find out all the details about our Amazing Experiences Sweepstakes!

Stay tuned for more features on our once-in-a-lifetime sweepstakes prizes! Winners will be announced on our Facebook page starting December 17!


Sign up for AquaMail

Twitter Updates


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 236 other followers