Leatherbacks, hawksbills, and greens!

July 6, 2012

It’s been a while since we’ve updated you all on the leatherback project. Good news is, all 3 species of sea turtle are nesting on Sandy Point: the leatherback, hawksbill, and green!! Leatherback activities have slowed dramatically, but these graceful, enormous creatures are still coming up and depositing their eggs. There is also a rumor that one of our leatherbacks, tagged back in 1981, when the project first started, has nested on Sandy Point three times this season. This is very exciting for us because it could indeed be the female with the longest documented history of nesting anywhere in the world! We can not say we blame her for returning all these years. Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge has prime leatherback nesting beach, with it’s open sandy shoreline, and an awesome, devoted field crew to go along with it!!
Just over a week from now, on July 15th, our night patrols will come to an end. I know we will all be sad to see the mamas go, but we are thrilled to see what they have contributed to the upcoming generations. We will continue with day patrols, documenting all activities on Sandy Point’s two mile stretch of beach. In addition to that, we will also be excavating nests, and recording the hatch success on each nest. It’s been a hot, dry few months, and the results of each excavation will give us an idea of how this season compares to previous years. The surviving offspring from each nest is the well-deserved payoff for all of our crew’s dedicated, hard work this season! Great job team!!

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