Michael Ronco, PWS, Earns PA Bog Turtle Surveyor Certification

Michael Ronco, PWS, of Isett’s Environmental Consulting Department, has recently obtained his Pennsylvania state certification as a Qualified Bog Turtle Surveyor. Deemed qualified by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, he now joins a select group of approximately 40 biologists in Pennsylvania authorized to conduct surveys to identify bog turtles. In addition to passing the certification exam, Michael had to demonstrate his proficiency by independently locating and identifying a minimum of 20 bog turtles at a minimum of five sites within the past five years. Michael discovered his first bog turtle in 2016 while accompanying colleagues on a survey and since then has successfully identified 42 bog turtles. He also holds certifications in New Jersey and Maryland.

Image of Michael Ronco and Bog Turtle

The crucial window of time to conduct these surveys is from April 15th through June 15th, between hibernation and when the nesting process begins. When bog turtles are captured, they undergo processing, including photographic documentation, measurements, and weight recordings. Additionally, new turtles are carefully marked to aid in future identification. A list of bog turtle findings must be recorded with the state annually, ensuring thorough tracking and monitoring. The data collection process serves a dual purpose: to facilitate research and direct focused efforts toward the recovery and protection of bog turtles.

Michael’s expertise adds value to the environmental consulting efforts, particularly concerning the conservation and management of bog turtle habitats in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland. His contributions to the field are commendable and undoubtedly beneficial for the preservation of these unique and vulnerable reptiles.

Contact us here for your bog turtle survey needs.