“There’s something civil servants have that the private sector
doesn’t and that is the duty of loyalty to the greater good –
the duty of loyalty to the collective best interest of all rather
than the interest of a few.”
– David Walker, former U.S. Comptroller General
High Quality H2O
Who: Steve Sulprizio
What: Environmental Analyst
Where: Department of Conservation & Recreation
MOSES: Member since 2009.
As an analyst with DCR's Division of Water Supply Protection, Steve Sulprizio conducts water quality sampling of all the tributaries that feed the Wachusett Reservoir. The Wachusett, along with the Quabbin Reservoir, supplies 2.5 million people in and around Boston with drinking water. Steve also tracks stream discharge and snow melt to determine the amount of water that flows into the Wachusett Reservoir on a daily basis.
Who: Jenmina Ojuka
What: Environmental Analyst
Where: Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
MOSES: Member since 1998.
"When we inhale fine particles -- 2.5 micrometers or smaller -- they can penetrate deeply into our lungs and cause respiratory illnesses," Jenmina explains. He and the DEP air quality team maintain sensitive field equipment that is used to collect and measure air samples, ensuring the air we breathe is safe.
Who: Bridgett McAlice
What: Wildlife Biologist
Where: Division of Fisheries & Wildlife
MOSES: Member since 2004.
Whether tracking the Common Loon or responding to inquiries regarding hunting laws and regulations, Bridgett McAlice knows a thing or two about Massachusetts' wild life. Recently, as vehicles zoomed by, she secured her harness before stepping into the “bucket," provided in partnership with MassDOT, then dipped below the Quinapoxet Bridge to band four raven chicks for federal and state tracking purposes.
MassWildlife, in cooperation with other agencies, is working hard to protect and extend the Red-bellied Cooter turtle population. Each year, the agency collects about 100 hatchlings and raises them in captivity for the first year. MOSES member Jonathan Regosin, an environmental analyst with MassWildlife, Division of Fisheries & Wildlife, explains, “At the time of release back into the wild, these turtles are approximately the size of a 3-year-old, making them less of a target for predators.”
Since the Natural Heritage and Endangered Species began running a “headstarting” program for Red-bellied Cooters in 1980, here in Massachusetts at just one site, the Myles Standish Forest in Carver, 350 turtles have been successfully released.
The Red-bellied Cooter is a state and federally listed endangered species. By the late 1980's the Massachusetts population was restricted to fewer than 15 ponds in Plymouth County. At that time, the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife initiated a "headstarting" program in cooperation with the US Fish & Wildlife Service. The Cooter Headstart Project is one of many turtle conservation efforts conducted by MassWildlife and other conservation agencies and organizations.
Regosin shares, “As part of the ‘headstarting’ program, cooperating partners, including area volunteer high school students, raise the turtles in warm aquarium environments allowing them to grow faster. This, in turn, makes them less vulnerable when they are finally released and therefore more likely to make it to adulthood.”
In Massachusetts, the Red-bellied Cooter primarily inhabits freshwater ponds that have abundant aquatic vegetation. For nesting, the Red-bellied Cooter requires sandy soil on land surrounding the pond. Red-bellied Cooters reach maturity at approximately 15-20 years of age with a life expectancy of 40 to 55 years.
Massachusetts has 10 native terrestrial and aquatic turtles (not including sea turtles) and six of those are listed under the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act (MESA). To learn more, visit MassWildlife and watch the Headstart Project on Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin here.
MOSES members making a difference around the world. Each year, MOSES scientists and engineers donate their time to Engineers without Borders. Here is just a small sampling of the good and important work they do.
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