Okanagan Turtle Adoption Program is a non-profit organization in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia which takes in pet turtles and finds them new homes. The four tenets of the organization are turtle adoptions, research, education and conservation. The program started in 2015, in partnership with a pet store in Kelowna called Okanagan Pet City, which specialized in tropical fish and exotic pets. Pet City closed at the end of 2017, however, the turtle adoption program continued on while working together with the Purple Seahorse Pet Store and other local pet stores and organizations. Ultimately our aim is to help reduce the number of invasive turtles which are being introduced into the wild because they pose a threat to the indigenous Western Painted Turtles.


Justin DeMerchant – Executive Director
Bachelor of Arts, University of British Columbia Okanagan
Major: Anthropology, Minor: Earth and Environmental Sciences
Action Team Member, Invasive Species Council of British Columbia


Marcelle Moreira dos Santos – Education Assistant
Biology Student, University of British Columbia Okanagan


Ethan Kachkowski – Animal Care Assistant
Reptile Specialist, Kangaroo Creek Farm
Store Attendant, Lake Country Pet

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