“To keep every cog and wheel is the first precaution of intelligent tinkering”, so thought the father of wildlife ecology Aldo Leopold. In retrospect, the legislation adopted by the 2006 Maryland General Assembly to preserve the State’s iconic diamondback terrapin (Malaclemy's terrapin)may have had all the right legislative cogs and wheels. The 2007 legislative lobbying effort might have been one of those situations requiring intelligent or at least experienced tinkering. For the third consecutive year the Maryland State legislature intervened in the management of the terrapin.However, the terrapin legislation adopted in 2006 may have been the better statute.
The Terrapin Institute began in 1998 as a consortium of concerned citizens, scientists, resource managers, and educators dedicated to the understanding, persistence, and recovery of Diamondback Terrapins and other turtles through effective management, thorough research, and public outreach. We work to protect an abundance of adult turtle populations, preserve nesting and forage habitat, and improve recruitment. In return the terrapin has become the perfect metaphor for natural resource stewardship and public engagement; the face of estuarine restoration, and a gateway to the many wonders of our rich tidewater heritage.
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