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diamondback terrapin  Photo: Orenda Land Trust

The Diamondback Terrapin turtle, native to the coastal tidal marshes of the Northeastern and Southern United States has one of the largest ranges of all turtles in North America, stretching from the Florida Keys to Cape Cod. Despite their expansive range - populations are shrinking!

Increasing pollution, creeping loss of habitat, even human conflict is pushing the already “threatened” Diamondback Terrapins - – one step closer to endangered.

Pegasus Puts a Conservation Plan in Motion

We mobilized and identified the best way we, as a foundation, could help.  

Our grant funding and continuing support made possible the conservation efforts mounted by the Delaware Center for the Inland Bays (DCIB) and Orenda Land Trust that is giving these turtles a fighting chance.

This year DCIB implemented a Diamondback Terrapin Survey where 32 volunteers conducted over 100 surveys and recorded 1,600 terrapins in the area. This vital research will be essential in tracking population and identifying optimal nesting sites. DCIB also installed several monitored nesting gardens for turtles as well as repaired shoreline fencing in order to prevent Terrapin fatalities from road crossings.

Orenda Land Trust, founded in 1986 by Barbara Birdsey to preserve and protect open space for wildlife habitat, air and water quality on Cape Cod and in Massachusetts welcomed 23 newborn Diamondback terrapins this past October!  A fitting homage to the Trust’s name – Iroquois for "extraordinary powerful life energy within all beings and their environment.”

You can find out more about terrapin conservation at and

Visit the Delaware Center, check out the video “Get on Board with the Bays,”

diamondback terrapin  Photo: Orenda Land Trust

Photos: Orenda Land Trust