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Nov. Seminar: Digging Deeper: Uncovering the Gopher Tortoise

An MRC Lagoon at Noon Seminar

November 7, 2023
12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Discover the natural history and importance of Florida’s keystone species, the Gopher Tortoise, at MRC’s November Lagoon at Noon event. Guest speaker Gerry-Anna Jones of the Gopher Tortoise Alliance discusses the threats that Gopher Tortoises currently face and how you can help preserve this ancient species in your area. See below for video from this event.

This education series is made possible by charitable donations. If interested and able, MRC humbly asks attendees to contribute toward fueling future Lagoon at Noon seminars. Thank you for your consideration.

Meet the Presenter

Gerry-Anna Jones, Member of the Gopher Tortoise AllianceGerry-Anna spent her early childhood on the west coast of Florida and was inspired by wild and domestic animals from a young age. Her professional career took her to Oregon to work in the non-profit sector. There she reignited her passion for animals by volunteering in parrot rescue, wildlife rehabilitation, animal sheltering and the Oregon Zoo.

Surprisingly, her first paid job with animals moved her back to Florida to work as a bird trainer at a well-known theme park! Once back in Florida she missed the coast so she moved from Orlando to Sebastian in 2014 where she started training companion animals like dogs, cats and parrots. She now runs her own pet training business, Goldstar Puppy Academy.

In 2021 she created the Facebook group Tortoise Team of Indian River County with the goal of helping get tortoises out of the road and bring attention to their plight. She still runs this group and has now aided in the creation of an official non-profit called the Gopher Tortoise Alliance. The mission of the Gopher Tortoise Alliance is to protect and preserve gopher tortoises and their habitat through education, advocacy, and responsible environmental stewardship.

MRC’s Lagoon at Noon Seminar series (formerly Lunch & Learn) is a long-standing and cherished social offered to the East Central Florida coast region, and is supported by volunteers and the community’s charitable giving. If interested and able, we ask participants to donate toward our guest speaker series. All donations are tax-deductible.