Eli Yager

California State University Chico

Eli Yager

My first truly memorable encounter with a turtle happened in the summer of 2014 when I was working in Indiana. I was performing some general site maintenance and happened across a turtle sitting in the middle of the roadway. With all the best of intentions I decided to move it to the side of the thoroughfare, and out of the way of any traffic that might pass through. However, when I moved to pick it up, it urinated all over my shirt and moved with surprising haste into the brush of its own accord. Nineteen years before this incident, I was born in Great Falls, Montana, where I lived for all of one year before being ferried off to Nebraska, and finally to Eugene, Oregon. Growing up in Eugene, I gained a great appreciation for the natural world, hiking along the ridgeline trails, riversides, and buttes. I carried this interest in nature with me when I moved to California and began college at CSU Chico. Throughout my college career, I continued to explore the natural world, working and volunteering with state and federal parks alongside various conservation nonprofits. Now a graduate, I aim to continue this work and do my best to help preserve the world around us and educate others as to its beauty.