Sunday, May 31, 2009

Turn Off The Lights! Here's why...

St. George Island, FL, Memorial Day 2009

Sometime in the night, while I slept only a few feet away, a momma sea turtle did what momma sea turtles have been doing for eons.

She dragged her mammoth body from the water and instinctively made her way toward the largest sand dune. The depth of her tracks indicates how huge she was, and how much effort it must have taken to find the perfect place to dig her nest.

Her first efforts at digging were almost fatal for her and her 100 eggs. A section of the fencing used to keep dunes from erosion had collapsed, and it was clear she'd nearly gotten caught in some looped wire.

But she persevered!

Volunteers who scout the beach each morning during turtle season discovered the nest and marked it with yellow tape. In about 60 days, baby sea turtles will emerge in the night and hopefully move toward the water. (They are attracted to light so everyone along the beach is strongly encouraged to extinguish all lights facing the beach and to removed all items along the water front so that the turtles do not get the mother turtle nearly did.)

Wish I could be there when the babies hatch! But I'd probably be snoozing then, too, and miss it all!

Click here for more info on sea turtles.