PARC National Turtle Networking Team

What’s New?

In the fall of 2020 PARC TNT united with the Collaborative to Combat the Illegal Trade in Turtles (CCITT). By joining forces, the two groups hope to efficiently grow partnerships confronting the illegal trade throughout North America, specifically supporting state, tribal, and federal staff. Learn more about the CCITT here.

In May of 2020 PARC TNT worked with the Collaborative to Combat the Illegal Trade in Turtles (CCITT), the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), and the Wildlife Trafficking Alliance (WTA) to write and circulate a Call to Action to Protect North America’s Native Turtles from Illegal Collection. This letter was intended to galvanize support within the conservation community for coordinated efforts to address threats to North American turtles. You can read the full Call to Action Letter here.

The Mission of PARC’s Turtle Networking Team

To facilitate and guide action through public-private partnerships to conserve native, North American turtle populations.

Key Objectives of the PARC’s Turtle Networking Team

  1. Identify greatest issues and concerns related to the understanding and management of native, North American turtle populations.
  2. Coordinate and develop partnerships, strategies, and tools to address broad-scale, North American turtle conservation issues.
  3. Provide a centralized online location where turtle conservation outreach products, resources, and contacts are available.

National Turtle Networking Team Co-Chairs

Cristina A. Jones, National Turtle Networking Team Co-Chair
Cristina A. Jones

Cristina A. Jones, Arizona: Cristina’s lifelong interest in reptiles was cultivated through the numerous hiking and camping trips throughout Arizona where her parents taught her that wildlife is wondrous and worthy of study. Her passion with turtles was ignited when she encountered her first Sonoran desert tortoise on a hike at age four, and began her fascination with natural history and conservation of desert reptiles. Cristina earned her B.S. in wildlife science and M.S. in wildlife ecology at the University of Arizona. For her M.S. thesis research, she evaluated the prevalence of Mycoplasma agassizii in wild and captive Sonoran desert tortoises in Arizona. In 2006, she accepted the position of Turtles Project Coordinator for the Arizona Game and Fish Department. As the lead of seven inter-agency/inter-organizational working groups, she collaborates with turtle biologists and citizen scientists within PARC, Desert Tortoise Council, and the Turtle Survival Alliance to identify, coordinate, and conduct priority research and implement conservation actions for turtles in Arizona and the southwest. Cristina is a co-chair, and a founding member, of SWPARC, serves as a Board Member at Large for the Desert Tortoise Council, and is an active member of the Turtle Survival Alliance Field Conservation and Conference Planning committees. Her professional goal is to maintain a position in turtle conservation and management which utilizes her knowledge, leadership, organizational skills, and enthusiasm to encourage and promote innovative ideas to assure the survival of viable populations of native turtle species throughout their range.

Noelle Rayman-Metcalf, National Turtle Networking Team Co-Chair
Noelle Rayman-Metcalf

Noelle Rayman-Metcalf is an Endangered Species Biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s New York Field Office in Cortland.  She has been with the Service since 2007, and her primary duties involve working on recovery of Threatened and Endangered Species and conducting environmental reviews of development projects throughout most of New York State.  Most notably, she is the recovery lead for the northern population of bog turtle.  Noelle received her Master’s degree in biology at Buffalo State College in 2010.

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