[MARINE_BIOLOGY_INTERNATIONAL] Sea Turtle Nesting Update From LMC Research Team


Sea Turtle Nesting Update From LMC Research Team

As of August 31st, the Research Department has documented 7,917 loggerhead nests, 803 green turtle nests and 246 leatherback nests on Juno Beach and Jupiter. This is a total of 8,966 sea turtle nests on Juno Beach and Jupiter, which is 2,400 more nests than we documented in 2011! We continue to see a few new loggerhead and green turtle nests each day. We will continue monitoring the beach for new nesting until the end of September.

Approximately 500 nests were lost on Juno Beach and Jupiter as a result of waves and erosion from Tropical Storm Isaac. While we mourn the loss of these nests, only 5 percent of the season's total nests were lost due to erosion. We are glad that our beaches fared well during Tropical Storm Isaac, and hope that the remainder of nesting season is storm-free.

It's Hatchling Season at the Center!

Throughout a typical nesting season our hospital team is usually responsible for caring for anywhere from 1,500 to 2,000 sea turtle hatchlings. This primarily includes loggerhead and green sea turtle hatchlings with the occasional hawksbill hatchlings. Many guests often wonder where we get our hatchlings. These hatchlings are typically found by beach goers or our research staff during beach monitoring. Some of them have marks left by predators, but most are simply too weak or overheated to make their way to the ocean.

The majority of our hatchlings are ones that most likely would not have survived without human intervention. The likelihood that a sea turtle hatchling will reach adulthood is anywhere from one in 1,000 to one in 10,000, therefore it is important that we take every step to care for them. So far this nesting season, we have embarked on four boat trips to release close to 600 hatchlings with the assistance of FWC and Jupiter Dive Center. Hatchlings are taken at least five miles offshore and released in an area abundant with sargassum seaweed. We are only about halfway into our hatchling season and expect to receive many more before the end of the season.

Loggerhead Marinelife Center

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