A Closer Look at Box Turtles

A box turtle Susan Dusenberry

On Sunday, Friends of the Long Pond Greenbelt will continue their Sundays at Two series with a discussion about eastern box turtles. The species, which is native to Long Island, is experiencing population declines in many areas — a trend that is predicted to continue as climate change persists.

Lisa Prowant, a Ph.D. candidate at Stony Brook University's department of ecology and evolution, will lead the discussion. In June and July of 2016 and 2017, she used two sites along the Long Pond Greenbelt for her research to better understand the predator-prey relationship between box turtles and other species.

She will link her findings about their population fluctuations into a broader theme of how to improve conservation planning under climate change.

"Mostly, what I'll be talking about is a little about turtles in general, the life history of box turtles, and the results of the number of turtles across Long Island to visualize that," Dr. Prowant said over the phone last week. "And then, how that fits into a broader conservation theme."

Dr. Prowant will also share important tips like how to measure a turtle, how to calculate the age, and how to identify if a box turtle is a male or female.

The discussion will take place at 2 p.m. at the Long Pond Greenbelt Nature Center, at 1061 Bridgehampton-Sag Harbor Turnpike. All Sundays at Two events are free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.