Few people know that both short-necked and long-necked turtles live in their own local wetlands or ponds. Although they’re our neighbors, scientists know very about Melbourne’s freshwater turtles.
Although they’re our neighbors, scientists know very about Melbourne’s freshwater turtles—particularly the impact that the growing city has on their health. Because turtles are among the top predators in the food chain, a healthy turtle population points to a healthy ecosystem. But globally, freshwater turtles are in decline.
You’ll wade through the city’s freshwater lakes and creeks to capture turtles, assess their health, and review the condition of their habitat.
You’ll have a hands-on experience measuring their physical features. You’ll also measure the pH, salinity, and soluble organic content of the water, which help determine the health of the ecosystem. Last, you’ll catch and identify the macroinvertebrates living in the water, the food source for the turtles. The data you collect will help illuminate how urbanization impacts the survival of Melbourne’s turtles.
Earthwatch’s Student Challenge Expeditions are designed specifically and exclusively for 15- to 18-year-olds. The younger generation recognizes the importance of their role in tackling today’s most pressing environmental concerns. Earthwatch is empowering them to be part of the solution. By joining a Student Challenge team, students will have the chance to spend a week with like-minded students from across Australia working as part of a field research team. Contact Us to see if you are eligible to apply for a fully funded position.