Meet Our Partners: Sea Turtle Conservancy

Originally known as the Caribbean Conservation Corporation, the Sea Turtle Conservancy (STC) is the oldest sea turtle conservation organization in the world. The group works on a range of issues that involve sea turtle rescue and research. 

Joshua B Powers and American herpetologist Dr Archie Carr founded the organization in 1959. Dr Carr served as the organization’s first scientific director from 1959 until his death in 1987. The STC started its work in Costa Rica and has since expanded operations to sea turtle habitats around the world. The Sea Turtle Conservancy is currently headquartered in Gainesville, Florida. 

In 2019, Wildlife Collections formed a partnership with the Sea Turtle Conservancy. Under this partnership, each purchase from our sea turtle collection supports their mission. Read on to learn more about the important work of this sea turtle charity.

Habitat Preservation

Habitat loss is one of the leading threats to sea turtle populations. This is especially true as it concerns the beaches they need for nesting. As human development and activity increases in coastal regions, sea turtles have less space to nest and the eggs and hatchlings face increasing threats to their safety. As a part of their efforts to save the sea turtles, the STC works on initiatives to preserve these important sea turtle habitats. 

The Sea Turtle Conservancy helps to develop and advocate for policies to protect and restore the beaches sea turtles need for nesting. Experts from the STC have also spoken to congress in the US and at the UN Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species. In addition to that, the STC has worked to establish wildlife refuges to protect sea turtle habitats. These include the Archie Carr National Wildlife Refuge in Florida and the Tortuguero National Park in Costa Rica.

Education and Training

The STC works hard to educate coastal residents, businesses and governments about issues concerning sea turtles. This includes issues like habitat loss, pollution, poaching, accidental capture and coastal development. Along with that, the Sea Turtle Conservancy has also developed an internet-based educational program that can be accessed by children and educators from around the world. At the time of writing, this program has already reached more than half a million children.

Beyond education, the STC also provides training programs for conservationists from around the world. This training is critical for teaching about the management and stewardship of sea turtle habitats. Graduates from the Sea Turtle Conservancy’s training program now work in 25 counties to help with the preservation of sea turtle habitats around the world. 

Turtle Tracking

Before tracking, most sea turtle research was performed by observing nesting sea turtles on land. Since the majority of a sea turtle’s life is spent at sea, this resulted in a significant gap in the available data about the lives of sea turtles. With satellite tracking, researchers can now see a clear picture of sea turtle migratory patterns and learn more about their behaviors and habitat use when at sea. The tracking data and maps are also valuable tools for gaining the interest of the public. The STC currently has tracking projects running in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, Central America and the Pacific Ocean.

Beyond its obvious utility for sea turtle research, sea turtle tracking plays an important role in public outreach. Tracking maps can be a great resource for educating children and getting them interested in sea turtle conservation. The STC also offers programs that allow people to adopt a sea turtle and track it. The adoption comes with a personalized certificate, a guide to sea turtle conservation and a range of other keepsakes. Programs like these can be good for raising money, and by connecting people with individual sea turtles, it can increase interest while also getting them personally invested in sea turtle conservation.

Outreach and Awareness

Knowing the work to save the sea turtles can’t be done without the support and awareness of the public, the STC engages in a range of outreach initiatives. This not only includes the educational resources they release online but also a variety of activities at wildlife preserves and the visitor centers they operate around the world.

In locations like the Archie Carr National Wildlife Preserve and Tortuguero National Park, the Sea Turtle Conservancy offers activities like sea turtle walks and turtle tours. These activities are great for educating the public and making them aware of the issues sea turtles face. Along with that, it can also provide a good opportunity for the STC to share information from the research they do.

Barrier Island Education Center

Located in the Archie Carr National Wildlife Refuge, the Barrier Island Education Center is vital to the work of the Sea Turtle Conservancy. Situated near an important nesting ground for sea turtles, the education center is not only vital for the research of scientists at the STC, it also offers a focal point for the STC’s efforts concerning education and outreach. 

With the Barrier Island Education Center, the STC has an ideal location to perform outreach activities like providing educational tours, presentations and volunteer programs. The education center is open to the public, and it has been a key asset for helping the STC achieve its goals for maintaining the local sea turtle habitat while also educating the public.

Raising Awareness

Save the Elephants does a lot of work to protect elephants, but they know they can’t do it alone. Along with their partners and other elephant conservation organizations, they know that they need the support of the public and governments from around the world. To achieve this support, STE produces a variety of resources and works with the media to raise awareness.

Beyond collecting and sharing research to help people understand elephants and the threats they face, Save the Elephants works with news organizations, social networks and ambassadors to help them spread the word. Along with that, they also produce films and publications to inform the public and gain support for elephant conservation.

Sea Turtle Tracking Bracelets 

The team at Wildlife Collections takes great pride in the fact that we are able to partner with one of the most respected conservation organizations in the world. The work of the STC is so important for the conservation of sea turtles, and we are grateful that they have allowed us to participate through our partnership.

With Wildlife Collections, you can support the Sea Turtle Conservancy by buying one of our Journey Bracelets. With the sale of every sea turtle rescue bracelet, we donate a portion of the profits to the STC. The bracelets offer a way to show your support for sea turtle conservation, and each bracelet comes with a turtle you can track. We think this is a great model for raising money for a good cause while also raising awareness and getting people interested in saving sea turtles.