The Blue Hills is home to wildlife not often found in Massachusetts, including Spotted turtles.
Once state-listed as a Species of Special Concern, Spotted turtles still need healthy habitats and large enough local populations to make sure they survive long-term. Watch the video to learn more about these seldom-seen resident reptiles and how ongoing research by Zoo New England’s Field Conservation Department will help protect their populations. In this presentation, Zoo New England will share information collected during recent field research on two urban populations of Spotted turtles in and adjacent to Boston and the Blue Hills. These sites in the Blue Hills and Stony Brook Reservation contain unique Spotted turtle populations among a heavily urban and suburban landscape.
Zoo New England biologists are currently radiotracking turtles to document population demographics and understand their habitat needs. By tracking female turtles, they can find and protect their nests—and ultimately boost this turtle’s population—by raising hatchlings in captivity until they can be released back to the wild as larger juveniles that are able to fend for themselves.