This week I had the honor of finding and sampling Blandings turtles in Illinois! I got bust out the waders from the storage closet and yes, they did in fact have water in them…STILL. After a three hour drive and coffee break later, it was time to check the traps!


While the traps that were set prior to my arrival didn’t catch any Blandings, we did catch a few surprised snappers instead. When these turtles are captured, they are worked up a bit differently and MUCH quicker! Shell measurements and the permanent ID are recorded and shell swabs are taken before the turtle is released. Oh, and you can’t forget to take photos of course!


While the traps weren’t as successful with Blandings turtles, we made up for that in hand captures! Over the course of 2 days, we were able to sample 9 Blandings and caught two more via radiotelemetry. On the last day, I travelled to a new site to sample 12 pre-captured Blandings with Dr. Allender before heading home for labwork. Since we were a little short staffed the last day, I don’t have any new footage to share…but, since you’re here, keep scrolling to learn more about a complete turtle work up!


Want to know what a Blandings Turtle work up looks like? Check out the video below or click the link to learn more from our two Blandings blogs!


Here is a link to Alexis and Michelle’s blog “So you caught a turtle…what now?”

As well as a link to Sam and Kayla’s blog “Full Turtle Work Up” featuring this video and much more!


Thanks for learning about these awesome turtles and make sure to check in next week for all things lab work with Turtle Team!