Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) Fish and Wildlife Research Institute biologist Anne Meylan accepted a Lifetime Achievement Award at the International Sea Turtle Society’s 34th annual symposium in New Orleans last month for her international contributions to sea turtle research, management and conservation.
Meylan’s research at FWRI in St. Petersburg examines the biology, ecology and migration of immature sea turtles as well as the feeding ecology and international status of hawksbill turtle populations. In 1999, Meylan wrote the paper that justified the Critically Endangered status of hawksbill turtles for the International Union for Conservation of Nature, the international organization that maintains the Red List of Threatened and Endangered Species.
“I was honored to receive this award,” said Meylan, a St. Petersburg resident, noting that the International Sea Turtle Society’s annual symposium draws sea turtle researchers from all over the world. While at the symposium, she presented on hawksbill turtle nesting trends.
“Many of us work internationally, and I have had the pleasure of conducting research throughout the Caribbean and Central America, especially in Panama and Bermuda, since 1979,” she said.
Meylan first became enamored with sea turtles on a research expedition to Costa Rica. “I was an undergraduate in zoology at the University of Florida when I got permission from faculty member Archie Carr to help conduct nesting surveys in Costa Rica. I also received my master’s and doctorate under Carr’s direction.”
One of the nomination letters stated, “Anne Meylan has left an indelible mark on the science and policy required to conserve sea turtles.” Another nominator wrote, “I consider the FWC program shaped by Anne Meylan to be among the most effective sea turtle conservation organizations in the world.”
To learn more about sea turtle biology, nesting and research, visit MyFWC.com/Research and select “Wildlife” then “Research.”