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Old 12-03-2012, 12:44 PM   #1
Foley
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Marine Biology - spec. Sea Turtles

Hey you!

I'm writing a scene which is set on a beach where people monitor sea turtles and I'd like to gently pick at the brains of anyone who has experience of this kind of work - ideally sea turtles, but possibly other marine biology/preservation activities would still help. Has anyone here studied marine biology, or spent any time at one of the sea turtle sanctuaries/reservations/protected areas?
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:18 PM   #2
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Ask away.

See: http://www.rookerybay.org/research/s...est-monitoring

Jeff
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:27 PM   #3
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Hi Jeff, thanks for stopping by.

I'm particularly interested in the daily activities of those who monitor sea turtle nesting grounds. What do they observe and record, what do the records look like (are there graphs, charts, spreadsheets... trajectories of mothers, GPS details....???), what's the daily (nightly?) schedule like... do nightime observers do anything with the turtles (I read they can be very tempermental and might go back to sea...)

Is that enough questions to start with?!? I've done quite a bit of googling, but I don't know what I don't know

I'm also interested in personal experiences of working at sea turtle nesting grounds or marine biology statistic gathering practices in general. Any help would be great!
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:44 PM   #4
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You might want to think of a different creature. Sea turtles were used in the book A LAST SONG, and I don't know if the movie of the same name used them. Relatively recent and as the author was Nicholas Sparks and the actress in the movie was Milley Cyrus, fairly well known.

Best of luck,

Jim Clark-Dawe
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:05 PM   #5
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Hi again Jeff, and sorry, I was in a mad dash when I saw your reply and mistook your page-link for a signature and overlooked it. There are lots of the details I was looking for there and I will probably drop them a line directly (I say probably because I hadn't heard of A Last Song...). Thanks again.

Hi Jim, that's a really helpful tipoff... and not a little frustrating! I read the synopsis and, while it's not really similar, my book does/did feature a nocturnal nest watch and a romantic liaison albeit in a more professional less adventurous capacity. Many thanks for the nod.

Mark
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foley View Post
I'm also interested in personal experiences of working at sea turtle nesting grounds or marine biology statistic gathering practices in general. Any help would be great!
Drop an email to Gary Lytton, http://www.rookerybay.org/bios/Gary-Lytton.pdf. Tell him you're a writer and ask if he can put you in touch with a sea turtle monitor you could interview.

Jeff
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:13 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WeaselFire View Post
Drop an email to Gary Lytton, http://www.rookerybay.org/bios/Gary-Lytton.pdf. Tell him you're a writer and ask if he can put you in touch with a sea turtle monitor you could interview.

Jeff

Will do, Jeff. I'm going to have a look at the Sparks book and see how he dealt with the subject, but it looks like it might be quite different (a girl protecting a nest on her own vs a scientific research unit).

Cheers,
Mark
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Old 12-04-2012, 01:04 AM   #8
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Not sure why having two books with a similar event is an issue. Free Willy was about a whale. Moby Dick was about a whale. Way different stories.

Jeff
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Old 12-04-2012, 02:36 AM   #9
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That's a good point. In some ways it's more to do with setting than the actual animal though. If important parts of a book were set on a 19th century whaling ship readers would possibly dismiss it as derivative of Moby Dick (one of my favourite ever books, btw). I don't think it's going to be a major problem in this case, but I do have to check the other book.

Thanks for thinking more on it!
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Old 12-04-2012, 02:44 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WeaselFire View Post
Not sure why having two books with a similar event is an issue. Free Willy was about a whale. Moby Dick was about a whale. Way different stories.

Jeff
But if I was writing FREE WILLY, I'd probably want to avoid naming a character "Ahab."

There might be no issue. There might be a major issue. But it's better to check sooner rather then later.

Best of luck,

Jim Clark-Dawe
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GEORGE'S STORY MORTON'S FORK Let's see how many agents I can catch with the query

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Old 12-04-2012, 02:49 AM   #11
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But if I was writing FREE WILLY, I'd probably want to avoid naming a character "Ahab."

It might be fun to name a whale Ahab
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