Episode 39 – Sea Turtle Hatcheries 

What role do sea turtle hatcheries play in conservation?  In this episode, Sarah Sevilla and Jessica Stevens dive into the background and various uses of hatcheries, compare the pros and cons, discuss their use in the US versus other nations, and explore improvements in and new technologies for sea turtle management.  This episode features Airton Jesus, a field manager at the Turtle Foundation in Cape Verde, and Kartik Shanker, an ecologist with an interest in sea turtles, based in India. Part of our Sea Turtles series.

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Sarah Sevilla head shot

Sarah Sevilla is an undergraduate at Duke University, majoring in Marine Science and Conservation and minoring in Earth and Climate Sciences. Sarah’s passion for the ocean has stemmed from her childhood as she grew up swimming and surfing. Her love for marine life and dedication to conservation has only continued to grow since her summer at the Duke Marine Lab studying sea turtles.  

Jessica Stevens head shot

Jessica Stevens is an undergraduate at Duke University, majoring in Psychology, and minoring in German and environmental science and policy.  Her passion for the conservation of marine life was sparked by research experiences in Costa Rica and volunteering at the Georgia Aquarium.  Her recent immersion in sea turtle studies at the Duke Marine Lab furthered her commitment to the protection of the environment and wildlife.   


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Ariton Jesus head shot

Airton Jesus is the field manager for the Turtle Foundation location in Boa Vista, Cape Verde.  During his first year at university, he had the opportunity to volunteer with sea turtles.  Since then, he has been studying biology and working with sea turtles across the islands of Cape Verde.  In 2015, he returned to Boa Vista to continue research and take on various positions.  Since 2018, he has been the field work manager.

Kartik Shankar head shot

Kartik Shanker is a founder trustee of Dakshin Foundation. An ecologist by training, Kartik has interests in both mountain and marine systems. Currently, he is a Professor at the Centre for Ecological Sciences (CES), Indian Institute of Science (IISc.), Bangalore where he conducts research on a range of taxa including frogs, reptiles, birds, plants, and reef fish and other marine fauna.  His work with marine turtles in the last 20 years has led to broader interests in coastal and marine conservation. His work at Dakshin is embedded in the belief that social, cultural and political contexts largely determine conservation outcomes. Kartik’s commitment to public understanding of science led him to establish Current Conservation, a magazine that bridges conservation and art by bringing together research professionals, writers and artists from different parts of the world. He is the author of the book From Soup to Superstar, a historical account of sea turtle conservation in India. In his spare time, Kartik also seeks to distract young minds through children’s stories which include Lori’s Magical Mystery, Turtle Story, The Adventures of Philautus Frog, and Moonlight in the Sea. 


Matthew Godfrey head shot

Matthew Godfrey is a wildlife biologist with the NC Wildlife Resources Commission. He is also adjunct faculty at the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University (Marine Lab) and the Department of Clinical Sciences of the College of Veterinary Medicine at NCSU. He has worked on sea turtle biology and conservation issues for several decades.


Kelly Steward head shot

Kelly Stewart is a research scientist with the Ocean Foundation and is adjunct faculty at the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University (Marine Lab). Kelly collaborates widely with various groups on research related to sea turtle ecology and conservation, and is passionate about contributing to training and mentoring of students who collaborate on different research projects.