Mid-season Sea Turtle
By Peggy Deneau
All of our walking and watching has certainly paid off. We now know that we
have seven loggerhead sea turtle nests on our beach. This is already one more
than we had in all of 2018.
Nest #4 Was discovered by volunteer Donna Fountain on the morning of
June 24. Volunteer Linda Herbst was there to help us find the eggs and take the
necessary measurements and readings.
Nest #5 was found by volunteer Jennifer Bryan early on the morning of
July 1. Soon volunteers Lisa Park and Kim Elliott arrived, and the search for the
We thought that it would be very unlikely that a sea turtle would nest on the
evening of July 4. All the loud fireworks and lights in the sky and on the beach
are not conducive to nesting at all. Sea turtles much prefer dark, quiet nesting
places. However, bright and early on the morning of July 5, we were proven
wrong. We had not one, but two nests, both laid on the night of the 4th.
Nest #6 was discovered by resident Cathy Cawthorne, who lives next door
to the beachfront home where the nest is located. She called me to let me
know about it, and I immediately called volunteer Anne Charlton, who was
just leaving home to walk that part of the beach. She soon arrived with Donna
Fountain, and the eggs were quickly found.
Nest #7 was first spotted by town resident Leslie Pylkos son, Jim Jablonski,
who was visiting for the holiday and taking a very early morning walk on
the beach. Soon
Small and Cathy
Crandell arrived, and
readings were taken.
By the time we started
to dig for the eggs,
Anne Charlton, and
Linda Herbst all
arrived, having walked
down the beach from
Nest #6 to join us.
That was one busy
Soon we will
begin sitting the first
of our nests, while
the nesting season
continues, and we
will still walk the
beaches and look for
turtle crawls for weeks
Jennifer Bryan with an egg.from Nest #5—Photo by usa Park
to come. Sea turtles can nest here all the way through the month of August,
and occasionally into the fall. Green sea turtles tend to nest later in the season
than our usual loggerheads. Two years ago, we had a green turtle nest that was
laid at the end of September. Due to two early freezes, the entire nest died. We
gave it every opportunity, finally excavating it on New Years Eve. We found all
the approximately one-inch-long babies perfectly formed inside their shells.
Hopefully, when this mama green turtle nests again, she will do. it a bit earlier in
# USA • #
Some members of the Pine Knoli Shores Turtle Patrol gathered to walk in the town’s July
4 parade. Joining them (holding the sign) is turtle volunteer Carolyn Patton’s grandson,
James Heeden, visiting from Greensboro.
Ken Smail removes an egg
from Nest #7 as Peg Deneau '
looks on.—Photo by Anne Charlton -'»'i
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learn more: thelastplasticstraw.org
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August 2019 I The Shoreline