GET TO KNOW US

ABOUT TURTLE ISLAND

OUR STORY

From the time he uttered his first word, "turtle", Peter Praschag had declared his devotion to conservation.

Peter Praschag child
Batagur baska Peter Praschag

Carrying on the work of his father, he has lived and breathed turtles ever since, traveling around the world to share his expertise in the field of herpetology.

Peter has attracted a family of compassionate, brilliant warriors for the cause, together creating four turtle conservation centers in his homeland of Austria, one of which was his childhood home!

When asked about how he maintains his tireless dedication to such an undertaking, Peter responded “From the first moments I can remember until today, my fascination for these ancient animals was so gripping and absorbing that pondering about an alternative path never came up. I know my life on this planet is dedicated to them and their survival.“

Thus, Turtle Island was born.

OUR MISSION

Our mission is simple: save turtles & tortoises from extinction through acute rescue, care, research, breeding, and rewilding.

OUR VISION

Our long term goal is to build a research and conservation zoo - "THE DOME" - to save turtles and inspire humans for generations to come, contributing to the rewilding of our planet.

OUR METHODS

The three pillars of Turtle Island are to rescue, research, and rewild endangered turtles and tortoises.

We combine ex-situ (outside the natural environment) and in-situ (inside the natural environment) research to save turtles and repopulate our planet.

Our ex-situ work mainly consists of caring for turtles, genetic research, and conservation breeding. Our in-situ work takes us around the world to save, study, and repopulate wild turtle species.

OUR FAMILY TREE

This is Turtle Island

OUR FOUNDERS

Peter Praschag

DR. PETER PRASCHAG

Biologist, Founder

Austria, USA

Shannon DiRuzzo

SHANNON DIRUZZO DVM

Veterinarian, Founder

Austria, USA

Praschag

DR. REINER PRASCHAG †

Architect, Founder

Austria

Torsten Blanck

TORSTEN BLANK​

Chair

Austria

Dr. Alexander Olek

DR. ALEXANDER OLEK †

Chair

Germany

Maurice Board

MAURICE RODRIGUES

Secretary

USA

Tierney

TIERNEY SCHIPPER

Treasurer

USA

Barbel Heiz

BARBEL HEIZ

Supporting Member

SWITZERLAND

Gregory George

GREGORY GEORGE

Board Member

USA

Brian Horne

DR. BRIAN D HORNE

Zoologist

USA

Sharon

SHARON WHEAT

Board

USA

Rita Chen

RITA CHEN

Donor Management Officer

USA

OUR TEAM

Anita Pfeffinger

ANITA PFEFFINGER

Administration, Marketing

Austria

Lisa Marschnig

LISA MARSCHNIG

Animal Keeper

Austria

Janos Török

JANOS TÖRÖK

Head Keeper

Austria

OUR TEAM

Birgit Doppelhofer

BIRGIT DOPPELHOFER

Animal Keeper

Austria

Alisa Tscherko

ALISA TSCHERKO

Animal Keeper

Austria

Maddy

MADELEINE WHEATLEY

Zoologist

Austria

OUR TEAM

Tanja Blanck

TANJA BLANCK-KREMSER

Zoologist

Austria

Elena Gaumberger

ELENA GAUMBERGER

Animal Keeper

Austria

Carmen Schübl

CARMEN SCHÜBL

Animal Keeper

Austria

Luisina Morano

LUISINA MORANO

Animal Keeper

Austria

Monika

MONIKA

Volunteer

Austria

Franz

FRANZ

Voluteer

Austria

Gabriele

Volunteer

Austria

Hong Duong

HONG

Volunteer

Vietnam

Forest headshot

ANNA

Branding + Web Design

USA

OUR TEAM

Alexandra Philippitsch

ALEXANDRA

Volunteer

Austria

Bonggi R. Ibarrondo

BONGGI

Volunteer

Spain

Felix Fabian

FELIX

Volunteer

Austria

OUR SUPPORTERS

Herbert Becker

HERBERT BECKER

Retired

Germany

Irmi Haeger

IRMI HÄGER

Commercial Clerk

Germany

Richard Gemel

RICHARD GEMEL

Retired Zoologist

Germany

OUR SUPPORTERS

Roland Zirbs

ROLAND ZIRBS

Employee

Austria

Till Ipser

TILL IPSER

Retired Teacher

Austria

Waltraud Pauler

WALTRAUD PAULER

Retired

Germany

OUR SUPPORTERS

Claudia Sommerhalder

CLAUDIA SOMMERHALDER

IT-Administrator

Switzerland

Rupali-Gosh

RUPALI GHOSH

Biologist

Bangladesh

Turtle Island Team

COLLABORATION

We love our partners and ...

To support our mission of conserving the world’s most endangered and overlooked turtle species, we are continuously expanding our network with international scientific institutions and universities worldwide who share in our passion.

Zoo Praha

PRAGUE ZOO

Nature and Life Foundation

NATURE AND LIFE FOUNDATION

Reptilienauffang Station München

AUFFANGSTATION FÜR REPTILIEN MÜNCHEN

Allwetterzoo Münster

ALLWETTERZOO MÜNSTER

Leibniz Institut

LEIBNIZ INSTITUTE FOR ZOO AND WILDLIFE RESEARCH

IUCN Logo

IUCN/SSC

FTTI

FTTI

Zoo Zagreb

ZOO ZAGREB

KFBG Logo

KANDOORIE FARM AND BOTANICAL GARDEN

PRT Switzerland

PRT SWITZERLAND

Vienna University

VIENNA UNIVERSITY

Universität Graz

UNIVERSITY GRAZ

...corporate sponsorships.

Turtle Island, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, invites companies to make a meaningful impact through corporate sponsorships. Your organization’s support, whether in the form of monetary donations or goods, can help conserve habitats, preserve biodiversity, and showcase a strong commitment to environmental responsibility. These companies partner with Turtle Island to leave a lasting legacy of corporate leadership in environmental conservation.

Hermes Pharma

HERMES PHARMA

Saubermacher

SAUBERMACHER

Ableitner Logo

ABLEITNER

DONATE WITH CONFIDENCE

Turtle Island Financials

Turtle Island is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organisation and your donation is tax-deductible, governed by U.S. tax laws (Tax ID number: 83-1706767).

In Austria, donations to Turtle Island from companies (§ 4a para. 2 no. 3 EstG, NT3539) and private individuals are tax-deductible as business expenses or as part of the employee tax assessment.

We are proud to be transparent with you.

SEE WHY YOUR DONATION IS TAX DEDUCTIBLE.

Beneficiary notice for donations AUSTRIA

MAKE A DIFFERENCE WITH US

100% OF EVERY DONATION GOES TO SAVING TURTLES AND TORTOISES FROM EXTINCTION.