Baby Blanding's turtles, a threatened species, released in Rouge National Urban Park

The Toronto Zoo and Parks Canada are doing their part to save a threatened species — releasing 36 baby Blanding's turtles Tuesday into a wetland soon to be a part of Rouge National Urban Park.

Parks Canada shared photos of the baby turtles before they were released into the park

36 baby Blanding's have been released in Rouge Park. (Parks Canada/Heike Reuse)

The Toronto Zoo and Parks Canada are doing their part to save a threatened species — releasing 36 baby Blanding's turtles Tuesday into a wetland soon to be a part of Rouge National Urban Park.

Parks Canada released 36 baby Blanding's turtles at Rouge Park 0:16

The Blanding's turtle is often nicknamed the "smiling turtle" because the yellow markings around its neck and mouth make it appear to have a grin. It can be found throughout most of the Great Lakes region and northern New York State. There are isolated populations in New England and Nova Scotia.

This is the third year that the Toronto Region Conservation Authority has (TRCA) worked with the two agencies to release the baby turtles. 

Blanding's turtles are a threatened species both provincially and nationally. (Parks Canada/Heike Reuse)

Last year, 21 baby Blanding's were released in the park and 10 were released in June, 2014. 

"Blanding's turtles are a flagship species representing a group of animals facing a variety of threats," said Dr. Andrew Lentini, curator of reptiles and amphibians at the Toronto Zoo. "Seven of eight turtle species in Ontario are at risk and need our help."

Over the past three years, a total of 67 baby Blanding's turtles have been released in the park. (Joren Romaniuk)

"The turtle eggs were collected from a stable source population in southern Ontario in 2014 and have been raised in a controlled environment at the Toronto Zoo over the last two years," said a statement released by the Toronto Zoo. 

According to experts, monitoring the turtles and restoring their habitat is vital to the species's survival in the region. (Parks Canada/Heike Reuse)

The University of Toronto Scarborough is helping with long-term monitoring of the turtles in the park. According to Parks Canada, the TRCA and the zoo, monitoring the turtles and restoring their habitat is vital to the survival of the species.

The zoo and TRCA first began monitoring Blanding's turtles in the Rouge Valley in 2005.

The turtles' new habitat will be part of Rouge National Urban Park, soon to be Canada's first national urban park. (Parks Canada/Heike Reuse)