September 3, 2009

Loggerhead Sea Turtles Hatch on Carolina Beach

This year, Carolina Beach has been home to 12 Loggerhead and 1 Leatherback nests. With the rarity of the Leatherback nest getting most of the public's attention, one might feel that the poor Loggerheads have been somewhat overlooked. But fortunately for us, one of the Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project volunteers has captured on video two of the Loggerhead nest hatchings. The videos remind us of just how tiny and vulnerable these little creatures are and makes us wonder how they ever make it to adulthood.

The first video is by far one of the best hatching videos I've seen to date. The videographer does a wonderful job of capturing the 'boil' on video. The boil is when the sea turtles come to the surface in mass making the sand look like boiling water. The hatching from the first video occurred on July 20, 2009 and the second was on August 1, 2009.

If you don't have 10 minutes to watch the entire first video, I'll give you some key moments.
2:45 the boil starts
4:15 the dash to the ocean begins in mass
4:45 the first ones reach the water
7:05 examination of the nest
8:00 release of the last of the stragglers (wonderful daytime close up)

As a turtle bonus, check out this wonderful blog entry from last year by a woman who is describing a family beach vacation when she was 13 years old. They were at the beach midday when she came across a lone baby sea turtle that had surfaced many hours after the others had already hatched and made it to sea. With no moon to guide the turtle, and knowing that she shouldn't handle it, she came up with a very clever idea of how to guide the little one to the water.

lemonologie blog: lone baby sea turtle
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