August 20, 2012

Sea Turtles Begin to Hatch at Carolina Beach and Kure Beach

Aug 16, 2012 (Press Release)

CAROLINA BEACH, N.C. — There’s a sense of quiet anticipation among visitors and residents of Carolina Beach and Kure Beach, North Carolina. That’s because the Loggerhead sea turtle nests scattered along the shoreline are starting to break through the sand to hatch. Volunteers are on high alert and ready to help lead the Loggerhead hatchlings to safety.

There are currently 23 nests at the Fort Fisher State Recreation Area, aptly located on Loggerhead Road, in addition to 10 on Kure Beach and six on Carolina Beach. Loggerhead nests started hatching in late July and are expected to continue into September. Volunteers can sign up to watch the nests on a limited basis. After the eggs hatch, volunteers may help dig a trench to the ocean to increase survival chances for the hatchlings.

One of the most popular animals found along Carolina Beach and Kure Beach, the average Loggerhead turtle measures around 35 inches when fully grown and typically nest on the ocean beaches during the warmer months. They are now considered an endangered species as a result of untended fishing gear and the loss of suitable nesting beaches.

According to a representative from the Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project – a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and protecting all sea turtle species – there are several things beachgoers can do to help ensure the safety of Loggerheads:
  • Make sure to fill in all holes before leaving the beach
  • Don’t leave trash of any sort behind
  • Don’t leave any of your belongings, such as tents and chairs, on the beach overnight
  • Outside lighting should be kept to a minimum as hatchlings rely on the moon’s reflection to lead them to the ocean, and they are easily confused by other lights
The Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project is currently offering a “Turtle Talk” at the Carolina Beach State Park Visitor’s Center every Wednesday evening at 7:00 p.m. At this weekly event, project founder Susi Clontz shares her insight about Loggerhead sea turtles and ways to help this beloved and threatened species. During nesting season from May through August, the Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project monitors turtle activity from the southern end of Kure Beach to the northern end of Carolina Beach.

Visitors to the area can also learn more about Loggerhead sea turtles and get a rare, behind-the-scenes look at how they are cared for at the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher. 

Late summer and early fall are the perfect times to visit one of these beach towns, whether you want to see the Loggerhead turtles first-hand, or enjoy a beach getaway. Families have been visiting Carolina Beach for decades to experience its nostalgic charm and to “stay original,” while neighboring Kure Beach’s relaxed, small-town atmosphere makes it easy to recharge and reconnect. Book your getaway now – some of the best rates are available in late August and September.

About Carolina Beach:
Carolina Beach is North Carolina’s original beach. This recently renovated seaside town offers the best of a North Carolina beach experience from the past with a fun, family-friendly spin for today. Visitors can experience a scenic, nationally recognized boardwalk, the Carolina Beach State Park, one-of-a-kind festivals and events, miles of pristine beach and local character around every corner. For more information, go to www.VisitCarolinaBeachNC.com or call (800) 641-7082. Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CarolinaBeachNC or Twitter @CarolinaBeachNC.

About Kure Beach:
Kure Beach, North Carolina’s small wonder, offers a naturally beautiful setting and small-town atmosphere. The coastal beach community, with its relaxed pace, lets visitors unplug and reconnect while they enjoy an undeveloped beach and signature state attractions, including the Fort Fisher State Historic Site and the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher. For more information, go to www.wilmingtonandbeaches.com/kurebeach or call (800) 631-1460. Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/KureBeachNC and Twitter @KureBeachNC.
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CONTACT:

Kristin Kelly

919.277.1180
kkelly@fwv-us.com
Photo from Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project Facebook page.
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