1 Million Turtles Community Conservation Program
1 Million Turtles Community Conservation Program
We need your help!
This turtle month, we would love your help to make the new ‘Turtle Nest Predictor tool’ even better by helping us to improve it further. This tool enables you to identify potential or existing nesting sites of freshwater turtles in Australia. These sites can then be prioritised for turtle conservation actions. The tool uses data from TurtleSAT and/or, vegetation and habitat characteristics to predict the turtle nesting hotspots.
How can you help?
In a number of states, turtles have started nesting. This is a great time to go out, particularly after a rain event, search for turtles nesting and submit your data to TurtleSAT. As TurtleSAT data feeds into the Turtle Nest Predictor Tool - it helps to verify existing hotspots and identify new ones.
When you arrive at a location and find that there are no turtles nesting, please report your 'none seen' to TurtleSAT. The 'none seen' data helps us to identify areas that are not turtle nesting hotspots - which is just as important as identifying hotspots that have turtles nesting.
Finding intact turtle nests can be incredibly difficult. This is why we encourage you to go out after a rain event. Turtles often come out to nest after a rain event.
You can engage in this activity up till January.
How will I know which area to target for this Call-to-Action?
To search for hotspots in your local area to go and check for turtles nesting after a rain event, go to the ‘Turtle Nest Predictor tool’ and enter a specific address or the name of your suburb. Hotspots will be displayed as a red layer on the map and you will see that many of the hotspots are located near water bodies such as creeks, rivers or lakes.
However, some may be near urbanised locations like parks, playgrounds or walkways.
You may opt to visit one or more locations. Make a note of the locations you wish to visit and go there after a rain event.
Some tips to help you get the best experience:
(1) Ensure you have registered for a TurtleSAT account.
(2) Visit the ‘Turtle Nest Predictor’ tool page - to learn more and access the tool. Access the tool by clicking on 'Explore More'. On this page, you will also find training videos to show you how to use the tool.
(3) Now, search for your desired location by entering it into the search bar at the top of the Turtle Nest Predictor tool's page.
(4) On the map, select and note the hotspots that you would like to visit and ground truth - for example, you may opt to select a location nearby, or a location that has minimal or no TurtleSAT entries – i.e., coloured dots = turtle sightings.
(5) Upon arrival at your location, ensure that it is accessible (not on private property) and is safe to proceed. You could also opt to or revisit these locations after a significant rain event as turtles often come out to nest after a good rainfall.
(6) Ensure to bring your phone along and have TurtleSAT open.
(7) Take photos of the surroundings (optional) even if no turtles are around or of the turtle if found nesting (IMP: please keep a safe distance from the nesting turtle and do not approach).
(8) Submit your data (and photos) to TurtleSAT. Remember, if you don't see any turtles nesting - report it as 'none seen' in TurtleSAT.
What data should I enter into TurtleSAT?
If there are no turtles there:
If you see a turtle nesting:
Did you know that ‘None Seen’ reported in TurtleSAT is very valuable for turtle conservation? Why? Your ‘None Seen’ data helps to refine the reliability of the hotspot locations displayed in the Turtle Nest Predictor tool, fill in data gaps and verify existing records - hence improving the tool’s overall effectiveness. However, if you come across a nesting turtle, as mentioned above - please keep your distance and minimise any disturbances such as noise levels. Once you are at a safe distance away from the nesting female turtle, note the location and submit your sighting to TurtleSAT. You can learn more about nesting and how you can get trained to help protect their nests by clicking here.
This call-to-action is a great activity to do alone or with your family and friends as a fun day out helping our turtles! Please feel free to download and use our Turtle Month Call-to-Action posters below should you wish to promote this or encourage others to participate.
We hope that you will get involved this November and beyond. In fact, you can start anytime now. For any questions, please reach out to us at email@example.com
Keen to play a part in understanding impacts of foxes on our turtles?
Click below to learn more about the nest predation survey.
Keen to start preparing for protecting turtle nests during the upcoming nesting season?
Click below to learn how to protect turtle nests.
Keen to discover turtle nesting spots in your local area but don't know where to start?
Check out our brand new nest prediction tool.