The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is asking Florida beachgoers and residents, who live along the beach, to be careful and watch out for sea turtles coming ashore to lay their eggs. The nesting season usually begins in May and goes thru October.
There are five different types of turtles who nest on Florida shores, all of which are threatened or endangered. They are the green, leatherback, hawksbill, Kemp’s Ridley and the most common, the loggerhead.
The sea turtle lays 75 to 150 eggs, buries them and then returns to the sea. About 50 to 60 days later hatchlings scramble from the nest and instinctively head toward the water.
Please do not approach, touch or pick up nesting turtles or hatchlings. Don’t use flashlights or fishing lamps on the beach as the hatchlings rely on the bright light of the moon to guide them to the sea. Artificial lights lure them in the wrong direction often resulting in their deaths. Condo’s located on the beach, or in close proximity, should keep drapes closed at night. Beachgoers should not tamper with stakes marking turtle nests.
In the past Mote Laboratories would mark turtle nests on private property for free but because of budget constraints will no longer be able to perform this service.