Turtle nest numbers up compared to 2017

Turtle nest numbers up compared to 2017

■ BY SUE ERWIN

Green sea turtle nesting is happening later into the season than usual, but Boca Grande Sea Turtle Association volunteers are hopeful there are still a few more new nests before the season officially closes on October 31.

As of August 31, the Association reported 709 Caretta caretta (loggerhead) turtle nests on the island. There were 576 reported false crawls (when a turtle comes up onto the beach but does not lay a nest). Three Chelonia mydas (green) turtle nests have been reported so far this year.

BGSTA Board Member Melissa Csank said volunteers are continuing to document high numbers of stranded turtles, including four deceased Kemp’s ridley turtles in four days.

“Loggerhead nesting has slowed and appears to be over. However, green turtle nesting is continuing a little later into the season,” Csank said. “Overall we have not had many green nests this year, so we’re happy they’re still nesting.”

If you’re on the beach and see what you think is a red tide-intoxicated baby sea turtle, the best thing to do in that situation is to call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).