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UVI & the VI Sea Turtle Project Document Their 100th Turtle

The University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) Center for Marine and Environmental Science and the VI Sea Turtle Project (VISTP) documented their 100th sea turtle last month, hitting a major milestone for marine research.

“When we started tagging and documenting sea turtles in the fall of 2014, Dr. Paul Jobsis and I estimated the number of turtles using Brewer's Bay and Hawksbill Cove to be around 40-50 turtles, at most,” said Scott Eanes, UVI alumnus and founder of VI Sea Turtle Project. “The estimation was based off of pervious research by Dr. Jobsis and Kemit Amon Lewis, but almost three years later we were really wrong and we couldn't be happier."

Eanes is best known for naming the bay, south of the runway, Hawksbill Cove. He and Dr. Jobsis started tagging turtles in 2014 as part of Scott's Masters of Arts in Marine and Environment Science thesis and they haven't look back.

“This has been a long difficult road only accomplished through a lot of hard work and teamwork. Scott's passion and commitment to understanding and protecting sea turtles have been crucial to our success,” said Dr. Paul Jobsis, director of the UVI Center for Marine and Environmental Studies. “Every turtle we document is measured and weighed and receives a series of identification tags and a small genetic sample is taken." Dr. Jobsis continued, “This allows us to know how fast our turtles are growing, how many we have, how they are using the bays, and possibly, where our turtles are from in the Caribbean. It also means that when these turtles reach adulthood and leave the USVI they have a greater chance of being identified, wherever they go next.”

More information is available in a news release on the Media Section of the UVI website – - and from this direct link.