March 1st, 2019
Loggerhead Marinelife Center will monitor 9.5 miles of beach from Jupiter to North Palm Beach as sea turtle nesting season gets underway.
JUNO BEACH — Sea turtle nesting season begins Friday, and Loggerhead Marinelife Center is ready.
Researchers with the nonprofit sea turtle research, rehabilitation and educational institution plan to monitor a 9.5-mile stretch of beach from the northern Palm Beach County line at Jupiter Island south to the northern border of John D. MacArthur Beach State Park in North Palm Beach.
Last year, the Center documented over 11,900 nests on that stretch of beach. That’s about one nest every four feet, and comprises approximately five percent of the world’s total loggerhead sea turtle nests, according to the Center.
“We are fortunate to study on one of the world’s most important sea turtle nesting beaches,” said Justin Perrault, LMC’s director of research. “In addition to day-to-day monitoring, this year, we are working on several research projects and collecting various samples to better understand local sea turtle populations and the impact humans have on them. We’re hopeful we can continue to use our findings to better protect sea turtles, and ultimately, our marine ecosystems.”
Nesting season runs through Oct. 31 in Palm Beach County. It is critical to protect area beaches during that time, LMC President and CEO Jack Lighton said.
“We invite our community to join in our efforts to keep our local sea turtle nesting beaches cleaner and darker during nesting season,” he said. “Cleaner and darker beaches help to protect nesting female sea turtles and increase the odds of survival for sea turtle hatchlings.”
It is illegal to harm or harass sea turtles, their nests or hatchlings, which are protected by the U.S. Endangered Species Act of 1973 and Florida Statute Chapter 370.
Source: The Palm Beach Post