Saturday, July 4, 2009

July Newsletter

Hello turtle trackers,

The latest issue of the Earthshine Nature Notes and Turtle Tracks Newsletter is ready! Check it out here: July Newsletter



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

New Turtle Tracks Newsletter! Check it out!

Hello Turtle Trackers,

Here is the link to the latest edition of the Earthshine Nature Notes and Turtle Tracks Newsletter--check it out!

Click here for the Turtle Tracks Newsletter

Take care,


Sunday, March 15, 2009

Transmitter Woes

Spring is almost here and the turtles will come out of hibernation soon and the 2009 turtle tracking year will begin! But there is a problem--three of the six transmitters we are using have malfunctioned over the last month! This was due to an issue in manufacturing. Apparently there is a component used in the transmitters that exhausts the battery much faster than normally. So three transmitters failed and two others that are still transmitting but have the same component have been removed from the turtles. All of the transmitters have been sent back to the manufacturer for refurbishment. All of the turtles except Mojo, who has a different transmitter, have been placed into holding pens and are still in hibernation. The new transmitters will arrive and be attached before the turtles come out of their long nap and the turtles will then be replaced back in their exact hibernation spots. It is my hope that this unfortunate disruption will not alter their natural movements.

Friday, February 6, 2009

For The Turtles 2008

For The Turtles is a video compilation of the 2008 Turtle Tracks season--check it out!!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Turtle Tracks Fundraiser Coin

The new Turtle Tracks Fundraiser Geocoin is now available! This collector coin is unique in many ways--to start with it is primarily a fundraiser for the Turtle Tracks Eastern Box Turtle conservation project at Earthshine. On one side it has a full color picture of "Tripod" one of the turtles that live in the Earthshine turtle enclosure. On the other side it has an Eastern Diamondback rattler and it rattles--yes it rattles like a rattlesnake! (see a pic in the photos below)

So why a rattlesnake and not another turtle --well, I also work with snakes and my favorite of all snakes is the Rattlesnake--and the Eastern Diamondback is the largest of them all. I thought it would be cool if the coin rattled and the great folks at (the makers of the coin) made it happen--amazing!

This is a fundraiser coin so all money from the sale of each coin will go to help fund the “Turtle Tracks” Eastern Box Turtle conservation and education project at Earthshine.

To learn more about the coin or to get your own just CLICK HERE!

If you are wondering what a CrotalusRex and Mimichan are--that is my wife Marian and I and those are our Geocaching names. Geocaching is an international outdoor family oriented GPS based scavenger hunt game that is a great way to spend quality time with friends and family in nature.

Thank you,

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

*URGENT* Please Help Save Steve's Place

The Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve is threatened by strip mining! Please sign this petition to help Terri Irwin stop the miners from destroying this rare and beautiful wildlife reserve.

Steve Irwin was one man--one man can make a difference--YOU can make a difference! Please sign and pass this petition on to everyone you know.

Check it out folks!! If you are wondering just where in the world the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve is located--check out the pictures I have put together from Google Earth imagery!!

Click the pics to expand them greatly for more detail!
It truly shows how remote the reserve is--and how beautiful! The sad thing is that the strip mining company wants to destroy this beautiful place--destroy the water, the land, the wildlife just like they have done a few miles to the southwest in the town of Weipa!! Check out the below series of Google Earth photos that illustrate the destruction Bauxite strip mining has on the environment.

Weipa from space and its proximity to the SIWR. You can see the destruction even at
this lofty elevation!

Zooming in just look at how much of the land they have destroyed!

You can even see the gouge marks left by the machinery as it eats away at the earth!

On top of the obvious environmental destruction and lasting damage of strip mining--this is a VERY remote area, so remote that it would be hard for the general public and environmental watchdogs to keep an eye on the mining company. They could and would be able to get away with all sorts of irresponsible actions against the environment and nobody would know but them--we can not let that happen. We can not let the mining company turn the refuge into another Weipa!

If Steve Irwin were alive today what would he do--he would not ever give up until he stopped the miners from destroying this beautiful land. A wildlife reserve is just that--a reserve for wildlife to live away from the greedy humans--but is seems that no place is sacred when money and power are at stake. We all need to work together to help Terri Irwin stop the miners from forever destroying this wonderful place that is tribute to a wonderful man--Steve Irwin!

Please sign the petition and pass it on to Save Steve's Place

Thank you,
Steve O'Neil
Wildlife Warrior

Turtle Tracks--a blog that follows the tracks of wild turtles...and more!

Welcome to the Turtle Tracks blog! Visit often to learn about the goings-on at the Earthshine Turtle Tracks Eastern Box Turtle Rescue, Rehabilitation and Conservation Program.

Turtle Tracks is based at Earthshine Mountain Lodge in Lake Toxaway, North Carolina USA.

In a nutshell Turtle Tracks can be described as;
1: a rescue and rehabilitation center for turtles that have been injured due to encounters with man, his machines and domestic animals.

2: a monitoring and census study of native Eastern Box Turtles (Terrapene carolina carolina) using mark-recapture and radio telemetry to census and monitor the status, health and movements of the local population of turtles on the mountain.

3: an environmental education program that offers hands on, exciting and fun experiential learning. It is one thing to read about wildlife in a book or watch it on TV but to actually get the chance to go out in the field and assist with wildlife conservation, study and research--now that leaves a lasting impression on a person--an impression that may grow into a passion for studying, preserving and protecting wildlife and their habitats from our own back yard to entire ecosystems.

Tracking Jimmy Irwin at Earthshine Lodge!

Turtle Tacks is a wonderful program open to guests of the lodge and anyone who would like to learn more about the wonderful world of the box turtle. For more information on Turtle Tracks and other nature programs at Earthshine check us out on the Earthshine Nature Pages.

Meeting Jimmy Irwin

This blog will also be an outlet for my Youtube series Wild Adventures with Steve. In Wild Adventures I investigate and explore all things wild and natural--especially things of a reptilian persuasion. Check out my most recent Wild Adventure below--Big Fissure Cave!

Check out more of Wild Adventures with Steve .

If you are looking for an adventure- filled, all-inclusive rustic mountain vacation complete with country-gourmet food, high adventure, farm animals, s'mores and wildlife study then you owe it to yourself to check out Earthshine Mountain Lodge--you will be glad you did!