UCF Meets the Conservation Challenge


Current MTRG faculty, students, staff: L-R: Chris Long (Ph.D. student), Dr. Erin Seney (asst. research scientist), Ryan Chabot (M.S. student), Dr. Llewellyn “Doc” Ehrhart (professor emertius), Kendra Cope (2015 M.S. graduate), Bill Redfoot (research associate), Katrina Phillips (Ph.D. student), Dean Bagley (research associate). Photo courtesy of Karen Holloway-Atkins.

On Feb. 9–12, a group of UCF faculty, staff, and graduate students from the Marine Turtle Research Group (MTRG) attended the 3rd Southeast Regional Sea Turtle Meeting, hosted by the Southeast Regional Sea Turtle Network in Mobile, Alabama. Two UCF faculty members and one research associate gave oral presentations, and one Ph.D. student presented a poster.

The theme of this years meeting was Changing Attitudes: Meeting the Challenges of Sea Turtle Conservation. The program featured special sessions, including one on the Deepwater Horizon oil blowout, as well as workshops on different sea turtle topics.

Professor Emeritus and Pegasus Professor Llewellyn (“Doc”) Ehrhart, Ph.D., was one of the many speakers throughout the event. He talked about the “Continued exponential growth in Florida green turtle nest production: Another record-breaking year at the Archie Carr NWR.” His research was co-authored by Marine Turtle Research Group staff, William (Bill) Redfoot, Dean Bagley, and Assistant Professor Kate Mansfield, Ph.D.

Dean Bagley, Research Associate, also presented at the event. Her presentation focused on “Satellite tracking adult male green turtles throughout the nesting season at the Archie Carr NWR and beyond.” Dr. Ehrhart and Dr. Mansfield co-authored her research. Assistant Research Scientist Erin Seney, Ph.D., spoke about the “Diet of Virginia’s Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles over three decades” for her presentation.

Dean Bagley is the vice president of the Southeast Regional Sea Turtle Network and was also the program co-chair. She co-chaired a special session on region-wide research, while Dr. Seney co-chaired the Foraging and Developmental Habitats session.UCFMTRGPastAndPresent_SERSTM3_FromRyan

Katrina Phillips,UCF Ph.D. student, presented a poster at the meeting. Her poster topic was “Good news or bad news? A shift in nesting female size among loggerheads (Caretta caretta) in the Archie Carr National Wildlife Refuge.” Dr. Mansfield co-authored and assisted Katrina with her research.

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