CHARLESTON, S.C. - Siraya Windsor has always had a love for the water and wildlife. This past summer, the rising Charleston Southern volleyball senior took advantage of the opportunities afforded her in Charleston by working with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (DNR) on a special terrapin project.
Windsor, a rising senior from Lexington, S.C., plans to be a marine biologist following her playing days and knew the opportunity would be great experience for her future plans.
"I've always had an affinity with water and its little creatures," Windsor said. "Knowing that, a friend of mine told me about the terrapin project with the DNR and said that it is good exposure for aspiring marine biologists."
Her love of the water and its wildlife has been apparent to her coaches and teammates from the beginning.
"Siraya is passionate about making a positive impact in the environment around her," said CSU head volleyball coach Christy Mooberry. "I'm really thankful she had this opportunity and excited to see what the future holds for her."
This was the first time Windsor had been able to work on the project, and terrapins were of special interest to her.
"Terrapins are freshwater/brackish water turtles," Windsor commented. "I've wanted to work with them because I wanted to see first-hand what the research and work is like. The numbers of the population have steadily declined and I wanted to help with conversing and monitoring the ones that are left. It also gave me a chance to make professional contacts in the marine biology world."
The typical day during the project included waiting on the boat team to catch the terrapin and bring them onshore. Once onshore, the team weighed and measured each terrapin. They then tagged them and collected data before releasing them back to the wild.
The project has been continuing over the past two years and Windsor would enjoy more people getting involved.
"All helping hands are needed," she said. "It's easy to get in contact with the DNR and help them out. The staff is kind and fun to work with."
The Buccaneers volleyball team continues their preparations for the 2015 season as they continue fall preseason camp inside the Buc Dome. CSU opens the season on August 28-29 at the Big Orange Bash hosted by Clemson.