Conserve Wildlife Blog

Archive for the ‘Wildlife Protection’ Category

Photo From The Field

Saturday, April 4th, 2020

Terrapin hatchlings and 3000 tons of sand.

by Ben Wurst, Habitat Program Manager

If lucky, I might cross paths with this terrapin in another decade (if it’s a female) and she overcomes the odds and returns to nest here as an adult.

While out inspecting our newly created terrapin habitat enhancement site in Little Egg Harbor, I found several terrapin hatchlings who were traversing the 36″ high pile of sand. I was expecting to see some hatchlings, since many arise from the protection of nest cavities on warm spring days in April, but not on top of our enhancement site. The moment I spotted one of these half dollar sized turtles, I looked into the distance and saw another.

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Exploring Wild New Jersey during these wild times

Thursday, March 26th, 2020

by David Wheeler

Getting out into nature has always engaged our five senses in a way that nothing else does, and at a time like this we value it more than ever.

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Meet the 2020 Species on the Edge 2.0 Contest Winners

Wednesday, March 25th, 2020

Congratulations to the winners of Conserve Wildlife Foundation’s Species on the Edge 2.0 social media contest for New Jersey high school students.

Students from all over the state took part in the contest by creating a series of social media posts focusing on one of New Jersey’s vulnerable species. The contest gives students the chance to use their social media skills, and knowledge of wildlife biology, to help imperiled species.

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The Terrapin’s Troubles, State of Change Podcast, Episode 4

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2020

The diamondback terrapin is one of the most beloved species of New Jersey’s coastal salt marshes. Their popularity has not protected them from the rapid development of our coast however, and climate change is calling their future into question. 

Terrapin and human interaction has been fraught with peril for the turtles for a long time. They used to be considered a delicacy and were almost wiped by the 1920s when, in an odd turn of events, they were saved by prohibition. Turns out that once terrapin stew no longer featured copious amounts of alcohol, people noticed they did not, in fact, taste very good. 

The fourth episode of our podcast, State of Change, “The Terrapin’s Troubles” features John Wnek, Project Terrapin coordinator and supervisor and researcher at the Marine Academy of Technology and Environmental Science (MATES), and Ben Wurst, Conserve Wildlife Foundation (CWF) habitat program manager.

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Ospreys Continue to Thrive in New Jersey

Monday, February 24th, 2020

Results from 2019 Osprey Nest Surveys highlight another productive year.

by Ben Wurst, Habitat Program Manager

An osprey nest in a snag on Barnegat Bay. July 2019.

Surveys of osprey nests in New Jersey have occurred annually for the past forty five years. They are conducted to help determine the overall size and health of the population. The first aerial survey over Barnegat Bay counted only five active nests. Ten years earlier there had been over 50. The combined effects of DDT and habitat loss had taken their toll. No osprey nests were productive and the population at risk of being extirpated from the state.

“In 1974 there were only five active osprey nests on Barnegat Bay. Today there are approximately one hundred and fifty.”

After ospreys were listed as endangered an innovative effort to transplant viable eggs from the Chesapeake Bay to Barnegat Bay began. In addition, to help replace natural nest sites that were lost to development, man-made nest platforms were designed and installed away from human disturbance. Slowly osprey pairs became productive thanks to the die hard effort of State biologists like Pete McLain, Kathy Clark and many volunteers and partners. It’s encouraging for us to look back to see how far we’ve come in the statewide recovery of ospreys in New Jersey.

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