Over the next several weeks, Erika and Maddie will be bringing you along some of our summer adventures, as we work with ornate box turtles, or OBTs for short. We will be going to various locations across Illinois and are excited to share our journey! In this first blog, get to know a little bit about us!


Erika Intro Photo

Erika with Ruger

Erika is a rising second-year veterinary student at the University of Illinois. She is from South Texas and completed her BS in Biology at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Before starting veterinary school, she gained a lot of experience in wildlife rehab medicine but is now excited to learn more about free-ranging population health! This summer, she is excited to gain experience working with and handling turtles. She will also be helping out the Box Turtle Team Leaders and wants to strengthen her teaching skills with student volunteers!



Maddie Intro Photo

Maddie holding a male eastern box turtle

Maddie also just finished her first year of veterinary school at the University of Illinois! She is originally from Maine but completed her BS in Bioengineering with a concentration in Cell and Tissue Engineering at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts. Her long-term goal is to pursue Zoological Medicine where she can work with as many species of animals as she can. She is most looking forward to finding Ornate Box Turtles, while also exploring all around Illinois this Summer!



See ya next week, where we will talk about the legendary turtle dogs!!!!