AKA The Best Week of the Summer
When we thought spending our summer outside every day in the field finding turtles couldn’t get any better, it did. We participated in the annual turtle games — BBV (Blanding’s Bowl V). The games have been occurring for five years and it is one week out of the summer, after the hard and long days of nesting season come to rest where we give our tracked telemetered turtles a break from seeing us and attempt to find as many other unique turtles as possible. The games originated as a way for LCFP Blanding’s team to measure the population as a whole and attempt to find and see turtles that have not been seen in a while or have been head-started, to ensure they are alive. As we have talked about earlier, simply head-starting turtles and releasing them in the wild does not indicate success in the wild. It is important to see these turtles again and know they are surviving.
This week was probably our favorite week of the summer. Five of our WEL friends came up to visit us and help us with sampling for the week, AS WELL as participate in the games themselves — Dr. Matt Allender, Dr. Laura Adamovicz, John and Marta (two fearless leaders of Turtle Team) and Lukasz. There were 19 players total in the games each with 10 traps to set and 1 extra bonus trap. Do the math and that is ONE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY SIX traps that we had dispersed throughout both of our field sites.
Highlights of the games:
There were 53 unique turtle encounters!
Dr. Allender had the highest score of all the WEL members
Gary got the first hand-cap
We taste tested sriracha sardine turtle bait
The most deserving human won the championship (watch video)
Neither Lauren nor Kirsten got any Blanding’s turtles the whole week..
Instead of explaining to you the nitty gritty of the games, we made a video for you instead. Check out who wins the amazing turtle trophies!
190 (we got 53 new samples this week during BBV!)