The Turtle Health Research (THR) team was out in force on a recent trip to check up on the health of our local sea turtle populations. The group was joined by students and staff from St Patrick’s College last weekend at one of our tropical beaches as part of an interactive research experience to inspire the young Queenslanders to respect and care for these iconic animals. The THR team, which falls under the Discipline of Biomedical Sciences at James Cook University, has been gathering data in this region on resident turtles as well as new recruits for the past several years – recruits are turtles that have just reached the stage in their lives (approximately 15 years old) where they return from the open ocean to the coast. With so many current threats to the health of sea turtles (six of seven species of which are found in our waters) it is vital that this long-term monitoring continues. And we are very happy to do so because – apart from getting a little sand in your booties – there’s really nothing to complain about when your workplace is a secluded tropical beach and you’ve got blue skies above you and healthy turtles in your hands!
Written by Rebecca Diggins
Edited by Associate Professor Ellen Ariel