Scientists Stick Their Necks Out Capturing A Decades-Old Turtle For Research Purposes
A female Blanding's turtle believed to be at least 83 years old was captured by scientists at the University of Michigan E.S. George Reserve about 25 miles northwest of Ann Arbor. It is believed to be one of the oldest well documented Blanding's freshwater turtles still alive.
I spoke with the director of the University of Michigan E.S. George reserve near Pinckney, Christopher Dick.
Despite its age, this turtle is extremely healthy and carrying eggs and will likely give birth to 20 baby turtles by the Fall.
Researchers have not been able to track many turtles for this long. They don't seem to die from old age, but by accident.
These studies help biologists determine how old a turtle can live.
This turtle will undergo genetic testing, be measured and x-rayed, then it will be put back into the water. Researchers say turtles could some day even be used for anti-aging research.
Justin Congdon has captured this Blanding's turtle 52 times since the mid 1970's. It was marked by #UmichEEB PhD student Owen Sexton in 1954— Christopher Dick, PhD (@CwdickD) May 25, 2016
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