Volunteers Needed to Help Monitor Sea Turtles in the San Gabriel River

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Volunteer project to monitor green see turtles

Volunteers will help monitor a population of green sea turtles. Photo by Claire Atkinson

The Aquarium of the Pacific has organized a citizen science project to monitor a population of green sea turtles living in the San Gabriel River in Long Beach. The Aquarium has partnered with representatives from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Fisheries Service, the Los Cerritos Wetlands Authority, consulting firm Tidal Influence, and California State University, Long Beach for this project.

Experts theorize that the turtles inhabit this area because they are attracted to the warm water outfalls near the power plants, but scientists do not yet have firm conclusions to explain their presence. This project will monitor the turtles and gather more information. 

More data will allow scientists and wildlife managers to determine how best to protect the turtles. The area of the San Gabriel River where green sea turtles have been spotted is being considered for restoration by the Los Cerritos Wetlands Authority, which will accommodate the needs of the turtles. Volunteers meet monthly in thirty-minute sessions to count turtles at stations along the river.

To learn more about getting involved with the sea turtle monitoring project, send an email to seaturtlemonitoring@gmail.com.

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