Thanks to a generous donation from the National Humane Education Society (NHES), the Network for Endangered Sea Turtles (N.E.S.T.) has added a new all-terrain vehicle to its fleet. The contribution was secured through the help of N.E.S.T. volunteer and NHES board member, Margaret Janes (shown in photo).
Much of the work N.E.S.T. volunteers provide requires coverage of 60 miles of beach on the Outer Banks and without the use of ATVs this would be nearly impossible. From May through August every year, our volunteers patrol the beaches from the Virginia state line to South Nags Head, looking for and monitoring endangered sea turtle nests and hatchlings. One ATV can cover approximately 2,500 miles during this period. Additionally, volunteers use the ATVs to monitor all the current nests on their runs and report any changes or activity to the N.E.S.T. hotline.
It takes five ATVs and volunteers to do these runs every day during the nesting period. Without them, a majority of nests and their hatchlings may go unnoticed and unprotected, resulting in a much higher fatality rate.
Typically over the 10-year life of a vehicle, one ATV and a volunteer driver may be responsible for:
- finding and monitoring 19 nests
- responding to 8 false crawls
- protecting 1,763 eggs and 1,325 hatchlings
The new ATV, which includes a large hard plastic equipment box donated by Twin County Motor Sports of Rocky Mount, N.C., will be housed in a storage shed behind the Duck Volunteer Fire Department.
The National Humane Education Society (NHES), located near Charles Town, West Virginia, is a nonprofit animal welfare organization created by Anna C. Briggs in 1948. Its mission is to foster a sentiment of kindness to animals in children and adults. NHES provides humane education, rescue and relief assistance for animals, and screened adoption services. Through the Humane Education & Advocacy Department, NHES provides educational presentations to all ages and information services to members as well as to the general public. Funding for services is provided solely through private donations. Visit NHES at http://www.nhes.org./