The Maryland Coastal Bays is looking for volunteers to participate in the Annual Diamondback Terrapin count from May 29th through June 2nd.

The diamondback terrapin may be Maryland’s state reptile and the mascot for the University of Maryland, but its current population status in the Coastal Bays is poorly understood.  In an effort to better understand its status, both organizations coordinate annual counts.

Trained volunteers will conduct these surveys throughout the week of May 29th through June 2nd. If you are interested in becoming a trained volunteer to conduct surveys, training classes will be held at the MCBP office on Thursday, May 17th from 5:30 to 6:30 pm and Wednesday, May 23rd from 5:30 to 6:30 pm. Please RSVP to Katherine Phillips at if you would like to attend. The class will take place at the Maryland Coastal Bays Program office,  located at 8219 Stephen Decatur Highway Berlin, Maryland.

The surveys will take place in the Coastal Bays including brackish-water creeks throughout the designated week. Counts take place both on water and on land. From motorboats to kayaks and SUPs, all are encouraged to participate.

Terrapins are the only turtle occupying brackish water, but other turtles, such as snapping turtles, may venture into more brackish water, so it’s important that you are trained to identify the correct species.

Locations of surveys will depend on the number of crews that are available and may take place in all of Maryland’s Coastal Bays. If you are interested in participating in the survey, please contact Katherine Phillips at or by calling 410-213-2297 ext. 109.