The Research Department at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center works to better understand the ecology and conservation of turtles on Jekyll Island and in the region while collaborating with other individuals and organizations to study a wide variety of wildlife. Our flagship project is our sea turtle monitoring program, which for many years has generated important data about the Loggerhead and Green Sea Turtles nesting on Jekyll Island.
Our research also focuses on implementing Jekyll Island’s Conservation Plan. The Conservation Plan, established by the Jekyll Island Authority’s Conservation Planning Committee, seeks the long-term conservation and management of natural resources on Jekyll Island. The strategy presented in the Plan includes a mission to preserve, maintain, manage, and restore Jekyll Island’s natural communities and species diversity while providing nature-based educational and recreational opportunities for the general public.
The Turtles of Jekyll Island, Georgia:
- Loggerhead Sea Turtle (Caretta caretta)
- Leatherback Sea Turtle (Dermochelys coriacea)
- Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas)
- Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle (Lepidochelys kempii)
- Hawksbill Sea Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)
- Diamondback Terrapin (Malaclemys terrapin)
- Yellow-Bellied Slider (Trachemys scripta scripta)
- Red-Eared Slider (non-native) (Trachemys scripta elegans)
- Florida Softshell (Apalone ferox)
- Eastern Box Turtle (Terrapene carolina carolina)
- Three-toed Box Turtle (Terrapene carolina triunguis)
- Snapping Turtle (Chelydra serpentina)
- Eastern Mud Turtle (Kinosternon subrubrum)
- Chicken Turtle (Deirochelys reticularia)
- Florida Red-Bellied Cooter (Pseudemys nelsoni)
- River Cooter (Pseudemys concinna)
Conservation relies heavily on ecological and health based research. Integrating rehabilitation, education and research sets the Georgia Sea Turtle Center apart from other organizations. In collaboration with a variety of conservation institutions, academia, and individuals, we have expanded our veterinary and wildlife health-based research programs significantly since we opened. In addition to publishing valuable peer reviewed manuscripts we integrate our findings in public educational programs to benefit a wide sector of our supporters.