We just returned from our annual family trip to Harbor Island~ a barrier island in the Lowcountry of South Carolina~ home to pelicans, herons, horseshoe crabs and a nesting site to Loggerhead Turtles.
By the end of our week’s stay, this private residential 3 mile-stretch-of-beach, had a recorded number of 64 turtle nests~ closing in on the record of 66 nests set in 1999~ twice as many than in 2010!
On two of our morning walks, we were thrilled to come across turtle tracks and volunteers inventorying and marking nests numbered 62 & 64.
Nest 63~ a wild nest was also discovered during our week stay. A “wild nest” is one that was not found and marked during routine turtle patrol. There were 126 eggs that hatched from nest 63.
Approximately 25 volunteers participate in the Harbor Island Project, searching each morning at sunrise for turtle tracks and nests. All nests are monitored until they hatch and data is submitted to the SC Department of Natural Resources and SeaTurtle.org
Nest 8, had 83 hatchlings to emerge~ the last 8 stragglers remaining in the nest were released early one morning. . .
So fun to see them making their way to the ocean :-)
Wishing all the hatchlings a safe swim :-)
Thank you to Fran, Judy and all the other turtle volunteers for sharing their Loggerhead Love!
You can find more information about Harbor Island Turtles including daily updates & nest counts here.
The Harbor Island Turtle Program is a volunteer program and receives no funding from the state~ with all expenses paid by strictly from donations. Havahart is sponsoring a photo contest that the HI Turtle Program has entered for a chance to win $500 which would be used toward the purchase of a product called Critter Ridder to spread around turtle nests to keep predators from feasting on turtle eggs.
You can share your Loggerhead Love by voting once daily from now until Aug. 1st~ for HI’s Turtle Program’s photo of a loggerhead hatchling, which you can find on page 15, listed under Judith S. here.