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Andrews Institute Funds Trinity Turtle Survey

From the Tarrant Regional Water District Blog

For Paschal High School teacher Andrew Brinker, turtles are not just a life-long fascination but somewhat of an under-explored topic in our local environment.

Brinker has drawn from his academic and professional experience to launch the Trinity River Turtle Study; a three-year project backed by Texas Christian University’s College of Education and executed by his very own high school students.

“The big goal is to get students outside and involved with a field project and learning basic natural history,” said Brinker. “Most students don’t know the birds and plants in their own yard.”

At least once a month, trail users can catch Brinker and his students, along with other experts and family members, collecting samples along the banks of the Trinity River. Much of their field work is a waiting game since the turtles first need to be trapped in cylindrical float nets. The students get to help assemble these traps while Brinker goes into the Trinity River to place them along currents where turtles are known to meander. It can take a few minutes to several hours before a turtle is caught and then taken to the research tent for documenting and tagging.

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