PRO­TECT­ING FRESH­WA­TER TUR­TLES

Canadian Wildlife - - OUTDOORS -

Fresh­wa­ter tur­tles are one of the most en­dan­gered groups of an­i­mals in Canada. In col­lab­o­ra­tion with Scales Na­ture Park in Muskoka, we de­liver the S.T.A.R.T (Sav­ing Tur­tles At Risk To­day) pro­gram. We also launched the East­ern On­tario fresh­wa­ter tur­tle pro­gram. In 2017, to­gether we set an­other record for in­cu­ba­tion of eggs from at risk tur­tle nests with 4517 hatch­lings pro­duced — 800 more than last year. Through re­search into tur­tle hotspots, we dis­cov­ered three ar­eas where tur­tles are most at risk of be­ing hit by ve­hi­cles and re­ported the ar­eas to the On­tario Min­istry of Trans­porta­tion who will mit­i­gate the worst lo­ca­tion. By iden­ti­fy­ing Bland­ing’s Tur­tles sites, our find­ings re­sulted in ap­prox­i­mately 35 km2 of wet­land be­ing pro­tected.

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