Brenda Quach '20

Brenda Quach

Major: Environmental Science
Bio: Brenda Quach was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. She has always been passionate about animal and environmental conservation, and is currently a senior at FCLC where she studies environmental science. Brenda currently interns at a coffee company where she researches sustainable coffee farming, and hopes to work in sustainable agriculture after graduation.

Title of Research: Analysis of Jamaica Bay's Terrapin Population
Mentor: Dr. Craig Frank
Abstract: The Malaclemys terrapin is the only estuarine turtle species in the United States and plays a major role in the coastal marsh ecosystem in New York’s Jamaica Bay. The population of M. terrapins has been on the decline since the 18th and 19th century, where they have faced a variety of threats such as over-hunting for turtle soup as well as habitat destruction. A long-term study observing the nesting habits and population health and size of M. terrapins in Jamaica Bay has been ongoing since 1998. This study analyzes the findings of the 2019 nesting season in particular. The data found and discussed in this project gives insight into the health of the M. terrapin population residing in Jamaica Bay today. Not only this, but the population of terrapins in the refuge can provide an understanding of the health of the area overall, and how we can improve our efforts to preserve the species. With several factors threatening the recovery of the terrapins, it is more important than ever to study their population. This work constitutes a part of the overall effort to facilitate the revival of M. terrapin as well as ensure the proper health of the Jamaica Bay ecosystem.