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Dr. James Liu 🐢  TURTLES + TRAVEL. (Proof that working with wildlife and living in New York aren't mutually exclusive.)


#fbf to catching bog turtles and getting covered in ticks with #bigturtleyear. This species relies completely on sphagnum bog habitat on the east coast where it shares its home with carnivorous plants, newts, and frogs. Unfortunately, almost all of this habitat has been cleared for suburban sprawl and the water to form these bogs has been contaminated or diverted. #endangeredspecies #bogturtle

The hingeback tortoise is the only chelonian with a hinged carapace, enabling it to completely seal the hind end of its shell to predators. This is particularly effective in securing tunnel entrances. This Malagasy tortoise is thought to have been introduced with the first indigenous people to the island from mainland Africa. #madagascar #hingebacktortoise

The Assam roofed turtle is a critically endangered species from NE India. They rely on healthy rivers to survive. This one was bred in captivity by @turtleisland.graz and has now reached adulthood. #turtletime #turtletuesday

Last night @natgeowild aired footage from my film "pillaging Palawan" on the poaching event of the Palawan forest turtle in 2015. It was the largest poaching event of freshwater turtles ever. 4,000 animals were locked in a windowless warehouse destined for food and pet markets in China. Glad this is finally reaching an international audience because this is a species found only on one island in the Philippines. It could have easily been wiped out if not for some Good Samaritan who reported their neighbor's warehouse and smuggling ring. You can see the film Untamed Philippines on Nat Geo wild and you can YouTube my film through the turtle conservancy. Thanks for reading this, the project means a lot to me. Shout out to all those who helped : @thewcs @turtlesurvival @turtleconservancy @kadoorie_farm_botanic_garden @zoos_aquariums and the Katala foundation and Sabine! #filmmaking #documentary

Caught in a thunderstorm in #madagascar with this beautiful adult male #radiatedtortoise. This ancient animal was completely smooth due to years of wear over its carapace. This species is one of the longest lived animals on the planet, with individuals recorded up to 188 years old. #fbf #rain

#tbt to the time I met my heros @thelonelyisland. (Love them for their comedy chops and undying love for the Bay Area. Go warriors.) We did a little collaboration on how to protect turtles for their movie #popstar. Turns out Andy genuinely likes turtles, and his first pet was a turtle from the same pet store I went to growing up in the bay. Still one of my favorite days ever. #lonelyisland

Turtles and tortoises both yawn. But did you know they can also yawn underwater? Boom. #wednesdaywisdom

The #bogturtle is very different from giant tortoises I posted about yesterday. They come from temperate North America, are aquatic, and they are one of the smallest species in the world. This adult female was less than 4 inches long. They are however just as endangered as many tortoises. #turtletuesday

The #Aldabra giant tortoise rivals the size of many Galapagos tortoises. However, they evolved on islands thousands of miles away in the Indian Ocean. You can tell them apart from Galaps by their pointy noses and sometimes if you ask them politely. 🍃 🐢

It's Friday. #treatyoself #tgif

Goode's thornscrub tortoise is the newest species of tortoise to science. They are found in the tropical deciduous forest of western Mexico and have a flattened carapace to squeeze into rocky outcropping a where they make their dens. This is unlike other #gopherus tortoises that dig their own burrows.

Northern map turtles. Full grown male on the left, female on the right. #curvygirl #tbt

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