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Nature Calls
home : features : nature calls
June 28, 2022


6/16/2022 1:27:00 PM
Turtle Nesting Season Is Here

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) reminds beachgoers how to help protect vulnerable nesting sea turtles while visiting Florida’s coastal habitats...

Each spring and summer, thousands of sea turtles  nest on Florida’s beaches. Because our state’s shorelines are critical for sea turtle nesting, beachgoers can make a big difference in helping them. Biologists note that some of the most important things people can do to help nesting sea turtles are to give them space, minimize disturbances and keep beaches clean and dark.

DARK: Keep the beach dark and free of any artificial light. Sea turtles find their way back to the water by the light on the horizon. Artificial light can cause them to become disoriented and to crawl into harm’s way. Sea turtles dig the dark!
FLAT: Knock down sandcastles and fill in holes after a day of fun. Holes are hazardous to humans and can be deadly for sea turtles and their hatchlings.
CLEAN: At night, take in furniture and toys so that all of the beach is free of obstructions and available for nesting turtles. Also, remove trash and other debris from the beach.
ON THE WATER: Expect to see turtles basking at the surface while rising to take a breath. In nearshore waters, it is possible to see mating pairs. Report struggling or dead sea turtles or manatees to the FWC Wildlife Alert Hotline: 888•404•3922.
RESPECT: In an ideal world, we would leave the beach to the turtles each night. In this world, though, if you are fortunate enough to encounter a nesting sea turtle, remain quiet and still. Be a statue. Give the turtle space, observing her from a respectful distance. If it’s nighttime, do NOT use flash photography or any lights. PLEASE shield your cell phone backlight. If it’s daytime, please send photos to use at: info@CoastalWildlifeClub.org and call us at: 941•212•2214.
Please consider a Sea Turtle license plate for your car. This license plate raises over a million dollars annually helping to fund Florida’s sea turtle program as well as grants for sea turtle research, outreach, and conservation projects. Find out more at HelpingSeaTurtles.org.






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