Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Sharing the Beach

Sea Turtle Weekly Update

Photo by Broward County Sea Turtle Conservancy | A plastic beverage cup left on the beach overnight—perfect size to trap a newborn hatchling!

Photo by Yesi Olvera | Kath, the Sea Turtle Monitor with a tiny shovel trying to fill in this large crater! Definitely a death trap for hatchlings trying to quickly get to the water.

Sea turtle season is between May 1st and October 31st and during this time of year residents, visitors and sea turtles are sharing Marco’s beaches.  

Female sea turtles are still coming up to the beach to nest and prefer to nest on the mid to upper beach protecting the nest from high tide. According to the sea turtle monitors, nests are due to hatch on the central beach in the next couple of weeks. 

Sea turtle monitors are very concerned with the recurring problems of big holes or large pits left unfilled overnight. These present a risk for both adult sea turtles and humans. 

Imagine a hatchling only two inches in length. It would have little chance of climbing out of a pit the size of a hot tub. A 300-pound sea turtle can easily fall and get trappedsea turtles cannot go backwardso she might continue to dig her head deeper in the sand and suffocate. Big holes on the beach can kill adult and baby sea turtles. 

For some reason, visitors or daytrippers like to dig holeshot tub size craters. One such crater found at South Beach was 4 feet wide and 3 feet deep. Unfortunately, some of these visitors will never read about the potential harm these craters posed to both sea turtles and humans. An unsuspecting beach walker/runner could easily sprain an ankle or even tear an ACL stepping into these big gaping holes in the sand.  

Photos by Maria Lamb | Thanks to Francine Klein of the Princess del Mar—she is making a difference every day picking up trash during her morning walk.

If you see a diggerplease remind them in a friendly way about the potential danger it poses both to humans and sea turtlesand to please fill the hole before they leave.  

Have fun at the beach, but when you’re done, please leave the beach just the way you found it, or better. Let’s keep is safe for everyone’s enjoymentincluding our visiting sea turtles. 

Reminders: Trash may be okay for Oscar the Grouchbut not for sea turtles. Please take your trash with you when you leave. Also take down your tents and pack up your beach chairs with you. 

Kudos: To Francine Klein and Albert Goldenthey are residents of the Princess del Mar and they walk the beach every morning and pick up trash items! 



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