Starting May 1st and going all the way to October 31st on the coast of Brevard County is Sea Turtle nesting season. This is a very critical time for these creatures as every species of turtle that lays their eggs on our beaches are either threatened or endangered. Our coast happens to be the largest nesting area in the world for the Loggerhead Turtles and Green Sea Turtles.
What can we do?
During these months The Sea Turtle Preservation Society asks a couple of things from us civilians as we walk the beaches, especially at night. If walking the beach at night or even if you have a condo with a beautiful ocean view, LIGHTS OUT. Any and all lights, due to the fact the new hatchlings follow the moonlight to the water. If they see different light, they will head in that direction. Which makes their chance of survival slim to none. They also ask not to dig holes, big or little, above the high tide line. Say you do happen to make a hole while playing in the sand, make sure you fill in the hole before you leave. Lastly, just keep away from any Sea Turtles or hatchlings if you see them and DO NOT touch them.
If you do come across an injured sea turtle, a hatchling that couldn’t find their way, or an exposed nest immediately call (321)-676-1701 or (321)-206-0646, give them your location, the condition of the turtle, and your name. If a hatchling is found there are a couple of steps you need to take before you call. Don’t remove it from the beach and don’t put it in the water or AC. Put it in a container with DAMP sand, NO WATER, and cover the container with a cloth. Then, quickly call one of the numbers listed above. Sea Turtle nests are usually marked so people know to keep their distance, but if a nest is what you happen to come across do not touch the eggs or bother the nest whatsoever. Again, just call the number above.
The Sea Turtle Preservation Society
The Sea Turtle Preservation Society is a dedicated group of people who spend countless hours researching, helping, and finding ways to put a stop to the decline in Sea Turtles. This group walks the beaches daily from May to August collecting data for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commision. They identify different things, such as: species of Sea Turtle tracks, false crawls, and false nests. They also investigate about a quarter of the empty nests after the hatchlings have dispersed to determine the success rate of it’s eggs.
During their months of walking they began Turtle Walks; inviting tourists and locals to take the walk with them. The walks begin at 9 PM and can last as late as 1 AM. You must be at least 7 years old and a reservation is required. “It is possible that you may way up to half a mile each way in soft sand”- Sea Turtle Preservation Society.
Reserve your spot in a Turtle Walk today: www.seaturtlespacecoast.org/turtlewalkregistration.html