The BLCT has conducted research on Barrington’s population of Diamondback Terrapin since 1990. Terrapin are aquatic turtles that live in estuaries; adult females emerge each spring to lay eggs in the sandy soils adjacent to our tidal rivers. Barrington has the only numerically significant population of Terrapin in Rhode Island. Research activities include capturing and marking nesting females, monitoring nest success, and relocating selected nests to a predator-guarded hatching area.
The principal investigators, currently Charlotte Sornborger and Pete McCalmont, are past or present BLCT board members and spend substantial amounts of time in the field, especially during the spring/summer nesting period. Over the last 25 years they have marked over 400 different female terrapin, observed hundreds of hatchlings emerging from the protected hatching nests to the surrounding estuarine waters, and supervised research activities of many field assistants at the high school and college level.