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St. Lawrence River AOC - BUI

Turtles


two turtles on boat
Figure 2: Snapping turtles.
   

Turtles play a significant role in Mohawks cultural practices, subsistence and ceremony. This study proposes examine population, hatching success and deformities, and tissue analysis to address Restrictions on Fish and Wildlife Consumption, Degraded Fish and Wildlife Populations, Bird or Animal Deformities or Reproductive Problems, and Loss of Fish and Wildlife Habitat BUIs. Year one (2012) consists of compiling pre-existing data of turtle populations to produce a status report to include recommendations of locations for chemical analysis of turtle tissue/and eggs. Years two (2013) will consist of field collection and chemical analysis for PCBs and pesticides.

In 2013, 5-sampling locations Inside the AOC and 5-sampling locations outside the AOC are targeted for chemical analysis study.

At each sampling location, we are targeting 5 turtle nests (i.e. 25 nests total Inside AOC and 25 nests total outside AOC). From each nest, 5 eggs will be removed for contaminants analysis, and the remaining eggs for incubation studies. Incubation studies include growth and deformity observation, and hatching success studies at SUNY Potsdam under the care of Dr. Glenn Johnson. Once incubation observations are complete, and turtles have successfully hatched, they will be released back to the natural environment according to protocol.

Contaminant analysis includes measurement for PCBs (209-congener specific), mercury, pesticides, dioixins/furans, metals (Pb, Dc, Al), and fluoride). Contaminant concentrations will be compared to published literature and toxicity thresholds when available and background reference sites of comparable sampling methodologies in the upstream river locations (St. Lawrence, Grasse, Raquette, and St. Regis Rivers).

2013 Secondary Data Review
  1. 2013 Quality Assurance Project Plan (QAPP) for Secondary Data Collection for Turtle Habitat, Populations, Reproduction and Contaminants In and Adjacent the Massena/Akwesasne Area of Concern
  2. 2013 Turtle Secondary Data QAPP USEPA Signature Page
  3. Turtle Interim Status Report
2013 Field Studies
  1. 2013 Quality Assurance Project Plan (QAPP) for field collection Activities for Turtle Habitat, Populations, Reproduction and Contaminants In and Adjacent to the Massena/Akwesasne Area of Concern
  2. 2013 Turtle Field Collection QAPP USEPA Signature Page
  3. Turtle Status Report





Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe Environment Division Posted: 2014.11.04  updated: 2015.01.08
http://www.srmtenv.org/index.php?spec=stlawrenceriver-aoc/bui-turtles