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Computing the Toll of Trapped Diamondback Terrapins

Image credit: Jeffrey Shultz
Thanks to the Northeast Cyberteam and MGHPCC computers Benjamin Levy, a professor at Fitchburg State University, is able to use advanced population modeling to assess threats to a South Carolina Diamondback Terrapin population.

Diamondback terrapins live in estuarine habitats such as salt marshes, creeks, and tidal flats along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts of the United States. Crab traps pose a significant threat to the population as large numbers of individuals can become stuck and drown. Additionally, predators and humans regularly destroy the eggs that exist in nests along the shore. Levy has formulated an agent-based model which uses data from a mark-recapture study to assess the impact of crab traps and nest disturbances on the longevity of a localized population.

Benjamin Levy
Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Fitchburg State University, Massachusetts.

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