The New York Turtle and Tortoise Society, Inc., is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to the conservation, preservation of habitat, and the promotion of proper husbandry and captive propagation of turtles and tortoises. The Society emphasizes the education of its members and the public in all areas relevant to the appreciation of these unique animals. Donations to the Society are tax deductible and can be made online with your credit card by clicking the Donate button,
or by sending a check payable to NYTTS, to NYTTS Donations, 1214 W. Boston Post Road, Box 267, Mamaroneck, NY 10543.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. From falcons and salamanders to deer and seals (and of course, turtles), wildlife viewing opportunities exist year-round in our parks and beaches. Urban Wildlife Appreciation Day is sponsored by the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation and the Urban Park Rangers.
NYTTS will participate for the eighth year in this event. Exhibits will include squirrels, skunks, raccoons, coyotes, eagles, live birds of prey, and turtles provided by NYTTS. Join us and volunteer to talk about turtles to the public. If you would like to bring turtles, or have questions, please write email@example.com.
How to get to Highbridge Park
By Bus: M101 on Amsterdam Avenue to 173rd Street.
By Subway: A train to 175th Street; walk across to Amsterdam Avenue.
By Car: No parking available within the park; street parking only.
Enter through the main entrance of the Highbridge Recreation Center.
The 43rd Annual Turtle and Tortoise Show
Saturday, June 3, 11:00 a.m.5:00 p.m.
Sarah Lawrence College Center for the Urban River at Beczak
35 Alexander Street, Yonkers, New York See Show Rules and information.
Directions to the Show:
Recommended Route: From the Sawmill River Parkway take Exit 5 (right exit ramp from either direction) onto Yonkers Avenue going west (turn right at stop sign at end of ramp). Follow Yonkers Avenue west until it becomes Nepperhan Avenue. Continue on Nepperhan Avenue, which becomes Prospect Street. In three blocks street ends; turn right (north) onto Buena Vista Avenue. Continue north on Buena Vista (passing the Metro North railway station on your left). Street ends at Wells Avenue; turn left one block under the railway overpass, then right (north) onto Alexander Street. Beczak is one more block on your left.
Volunteer Diamondback Terrapin Research in New York City
Once again we will be welcoming volunteers, especially undergraduate students, to help with our long-term research project on diamondback terrapins in New York Citys Jamaica Bay in June and July 2017. The field site can be easily reached by train, bus, or car from NYC, Long Island, and nearby NJ.
The field work involves mark-recapture of nesting terrapins, monitoring nests and raccoons, and interacting with park visitors. This is an excellent opportunity for students to enhance their experience with urban wildlife and scientific research. Please pass this information on to potentially interested people. See more on the Jamaica Bay Terrapin Research Project. For more information, contact Dr. Russell Burke at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NYTTS Salutes Sara Ramos
Turtle lovers all are we, but no one loves her turtles more than Sara!
Long-time member of NYTTS, Sara has become popularly known in her Brooklyn neighborhood as The Turtle Lady of Willamsburg. That moniker is well deserved as some 60 turtles and tortoises fully dominate her small apartment.
Saluting Our Own Lorri Cramer, Director of the NYTTS Turtle Rehab Program
When authorities find sick or illegally obtained turtles in New York City, Lorri Cramer is one of the first people they call. As a wildlife rehabilitator, Cramer nurses the little guys back to health until they are ready to be released in the wild. Over the past 30 years, she has taken care of thousands of turtles from her Manhattan apartment.
Honoring Peter Pritchard
The 14th Annual Symposium on the Conservation and Biology of Tortoises and Freshwater Turtles (New Orleans, 2016) honored Peter Pritchard for his life time accomplishments. Produced by the Turtles Conservancy.
Preserving Lonesome George
A short documentary from the American Museum of Natural History
Lonesome George at the Museum of Natural History
Nearly four years have passed since the death of Lonesome George on June 24, 2012. Since then he was sent to the American Museum of Natural History to be preserved for generations to see and appreciate the magnificent animal he was.
The Turtle Survival Alliance has confirmed that one of the worlds four known remaining Yangtze Giant Softshell Turtles (Rafetus swinhoei), has died in Vietnam. This turtlebelieved to be a malewas highly revered in Vietnam and was a long-time occupant of Hoan Kiem Lake in the heart of downtown Hanoi. Sightings of the turtle attracted large crowds, as well as visitors from around the world.
This turtle made global news back in 2011 when health concerns prompted officials to capture the turtle for medical treatment and mount a massive cleanup effort for the polluted lake.
The death of this Rafetus reduces the known number of living animals to three: one in a protected lake in Vietnam and a pair at the Suzhou Zoo in China. Since 2008, this pair has been the subject of intensive efforts to encourage them to reproduce in captivity as a last ditch effort to save the species, currently recognized as the most endangered turtle in the world.
NYTTS Turtle Rehabber Lorri Cramer in The New York Times
Lorri Cramers Upper West Side apartment has the feel of an aquarium, with turtles in glass tanks cluttering the living room, surrounding the upright piano and edging up to the furniture.
In Memoriam ~ Yaqui Guthrie Yamdrok
November 12, 1932August 25, 2015
Yaqui Yamdrok (née Sally Guthrie) died on August 25. She was a long-time member of NYTTS, and many will remember her from meetings. After the death of her own turtle, Mullanher companion for almost 50 years(!), she spent many hours at the Wild Bird Fund caring for the turtles in the north window, for whom she was a constant advocate. We miss her impassioned presence.
She was an actress, a professional photographer, and the author of a childrens book, By Two. About 15 years ago she wrote an essay about her life. Excellent Advice from Barbara Daddario
on Turtles and Tortoises as Pets
Our own Barbara Daddario, Chair of the NYTTS Public Education and Information Committee, was interviewed by VetSteeet.com (a Web site devoted to advice for pet owners, finding veterinary care, and pet news). Read Barbaras advice in Tempted to Get a Pet Turtle or Tortoise? Read This First, by Linda Lombardi, March 27, 2014.
Frank with giant mata-mata
That Reptile Blog by Frank Indiviglio
Frank Indiviglio, former Staten Island Zoo and Bronx Zoo keeper, and long-time friend of NYTTS, writes numerous articles for That Pet Place, especially for That Reptile Blog as well as others.
Populations worldwide are in serious decline. NYTTS salutes
Dr. Kerry Kriger and Save the Frogs for its vital conservation work.
Order Online! NYTTS bumper stickers and turtle food (Turtle Brittle and AquaMax) can now be ordered online. Payment by credit card through PayPal, or by check. Go to the NYTTS Online Order Form.
Notice to New York City Residents
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation now has a 24-hour tips line to report violations of protected species regulations. It is prohibited to sell any New York State species of reptiles and amphibians. If you see any New York species for sale in pet shops or markets, please call 1-800-847-7332. Report the name and address of the business, and the animals you observed for sale.
Unfortunately, we no longer have local homes for these turtles because of the high numbers that have come to us in recent years. We sometimes have members with ponds who may offer to take in displaced sliders. We do not accept postings by individuals for adoptions of any species. All adoptions are handled through official NYTTS channels, and notices will be emailed to members at the discretion of our Board. Those members wishing to place turtles or to be considered as prospective adopters of sliders and other species should email QandA@nytts.org with their contact information and the species they are interested in placing or adopting. Photos of their turtle/tortoise habitats and accommodations should be provided. Photos of turtles to be placed should also be provided.
Seminar 2017 The 31st NYTTS Seminar was held at the Sarah Lawrence College Center for the Urban River at Beczak in Yonkers, New York, on Saturday, March 25, 2017. Featured speakers included George Heinrich (Heinrich Ecological Services, St. Petersburg, Florida); Nathan Reid (Amarican Museum of Natural History); and Paul Calle (Wildlife Conservation Society, Bronx Zoo). See photos from this meeting and review speakers and presentations.
Urban Wildlife Appreciation Day NYTTS Displays Turtles for seventh year, Saturday, May 7. 2016. See slides of this event and previous years.
Seminar 2015 The 30th NYTTS Annual Seminar was held at the Sarah Lawrence College Center for the Urban River at Beczak in Yonkers, New York, on Saturday, October 24, 2015. Featured speakers included Britney Murphy, Danielle Taylor-Lang, and Nichole Shelmidine (WCS/Prospect Park Zoo); Theodora Pinou (Western Connecticut State University); and Ben Atkinson (Flagler College, St. Augustine, Florida). See photos from this meeting and review speakers and presentations.
Compassionate Release of Hatchling Turtles The NYTTS Rehabilitation Program, directed by Lorri Cramer, continues its collaboration with local Buddhist leaders. See the special release ceremony on October 11, 2014.
Urban Wildlife Appreciation Day 2014 NYTTS Displays Turtles for fifth year, Saturday, May 4. 2014. See slides of this event and previous years.
Seminar 2014 The 29th NYTTS Annual Seminar, was held in the Arsenal Gallery in Central Park, New York City, on Saturday, May 17, 2014. Featured speakers included Bronx Zoo Curator of Herpetology Don Boyer, Smithsonian Instutute paleontologist Tyler Lyson, Chelonian Research Institute director Peter C.H. Pritchard, and Chief Bronx Zoo veterinarian Bonnie Raphael. See photos from this meeting and review speakers and presentations.
Josephine Arnold, a long-time member and familiar face at the Annual Turtle and Tortoise Shows, passed away suddenly on Sunday, April 14, 2013. See memorial page.
Alex Ypsilanti, long-time member and NYTTS Board member, passed away after a long and brave battle with cancer on Saturday, April 6, 2013. See memorial page.
NYTTS Joins Buddhist Leaders to encourage humane and environmentally friendly practices The NYTTS Rehabilitation Program is collaborating with local Buddhist leaders to encourage the New Compassionate Release Life Practice and to support humane and environmentally friendly practices toward turtles and other animals. See Environmentally Friendly Buddhist Release Practices by Lorri Cramer, Director, NYTTS Turtle Rehabilitation Program (July 2012).
In Memory of Don Riemer Long-time friend of NYTTS and contributing author to its publications in the 1980s and 90s, Donald N. Riemer, 78, died of cardiac arrest on June 13, 2012. He was a professor at Rutgers University where he conducted research and taught courses related to aquatic plants. See memorial and obituary.
Fish and Turtle Rescue in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, March 2012 For a second time NYTTS members particpated in the Fish and Rescue project in Prospect Park. See description and photo slide show.
Seminar 2012 the 27th NYTTS Annual Seminar, was held in the Arsenal Gallery in Central Park, New York City, on March 10, 2012. Featured speakers included naturalist-artist David M. Carroll, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Bog Turtle Recovery Program Coordinator Alison Whitlock, and Chelonian Institute Director Peter C.H. Pritchard. See photos from this meeting and review speakers and presentations.
Snapper Found in February 2012 Frank Indiviglio and his 4-year-old nephew Haiden discovered a large snapping turtle in Alpine, New Jersey, in February. See Snapper Active in February.
Papa Tortuga at NYTTS On February 13, 2011, Fernando, affectionately known as Papa Tortuga (Father Turtle), and his team from the Tecolutla Turtle Preservation Project, presented a documentary and lecture on Fernandos many years of work protecting nests and hatchlings. See more of Papa Tortuga at NYTTS.
Remembering JoAnn Vacchiano Longtime NYTTS member and devoted turtle person JoAnn Vachiano passed away on January 20, 2011. See photo and remembrances.
In Memoriam: John Thorbjarnarson, well-known Wildlife Conservation Society herpetologist, died of malaria in India on February 14, 2010. See A Life in Conservation by Chuck Schaffer.
Fish and Turtle Rescue in Propect Park In November 2009, NYTTS volunteers joined the Natural Resounces Crew in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, in their fish and turtle rescue project while a small portion of the northeast end of Prospect Park Lake was drained by the Parks Department in preparation for reconstruction of the shoreline. See more information and slides of that effort.
The Asian Turtle Crisis: An Update Two videos taken 13 years apart show that little changed in the markets in Guangzhou, China, from 1997 to 2009. Compare the videos.
Clarifying Regulations in New York State for all Native Species: The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation now requires a permit to keep any species of reptile and amphibian native to New York State. This includes all twelve species of New York turtles. The mechanism by which owners of New York turtles may acquire permits is being investigated. Read and download an overview of the new regulations.
Membership in the New York Turtle and Tortoise Society is open to all interested persons for an annual fee of $25. Your membership helps support the Societys activities and programs, including Rescue/Rehab and Public Education, as well as meetings and lectures. Go to Membership Registration Form.
Donations to the New York Turtle and Tortoise Society are tax deductible and can be made online with your credit card by clicking the Donate button, or by sending a check payable to NYTTS, to NYTTS Donations, 1214 W. Boston Post Road, Box 267, Mamaroneck, NY 10543.
NYTTS Mailing List. If you wish to be added to our mailing list, please submit your e-mail address. Those who subsribed to the NYTTS Yahoo Group have been added to the main NYTTS Mailing List. If you wish to remove your address from our list, please write Webmaster.
Questions? Send your inquiries to the appropriate committee chair:
General Information Turtle husbandry and health care, adoptions, NYTTS activities and general information. If you have a turtle-related question, inquire online here.
Public Education and Information Chair Barbara Daddario
Public education programs and outreach events, adoptions
Director of Turtle Rehabilitation and Curriculum Development Lorri Cramer
Wild turtle rehab, injured, and sick turtles
Memberships and Sales Allen Foust
Membership inquiries and member records; turtle food and bumper stickers
Programs, Meetings, and Habitat Construction Matt Hybel
Speaker acquisition, scheduling, and design and construction of habitats