Western Painted Turtle in Aldergrove Marsh Pond
Naturalist Heather Stevens has been watching the Marsh Pond in the Bowl area of Aldergrove Regional Park for a few years hoping to see a Western Painted Turtle (Chrysemys picta). She learned about the BC Western Painted Turtle Recovery Project “headstart” program on a guided walk three years ago. The idea is to grow these rare turtles for a year in captivity so that when released into the wild they have a higher chance of survival. The last release here was 20 turtles in May 2020.
While the Marsh Pond is man-made, wild Western Painted Turtles were discovered in the pond during a survey so it was seen as good habitat for this species. This was further improved with addition of a nesting beach and placement of basking logs. Expanding
this population with these introductions will contribute to the recovery of this endangered species. Habitat protection, enhancement and control of invasive species is vital to its long-term success.
To learn more about Western Painted Turtles and conservation efforts go to