A shift in the winds brought a lucky turtle to Kitty Hawk this morning so that ATV rider Peggy could find the first nest for Kitty Hawk in a few years. Despite a cool and dreary night with spots of rain to dampen the sand, a mama Loggerhead decided to nest, but she didn’t quite feel like venturing all the way up the beach. Instead she picked a nice little spot below the average high tide line – not so nice for her little eggs though.

Ken and Tim working together to clear the sand on top of the egg chamber.

The Nesting Response Team was swift to get to work reading the crawl and excavating the nest to find those cute little ping-pong sized eggs. It was Ken who found the first egg with eager eyes gathering around to see just where our tricky turtle had laid her eggs. Despite coming across hard sand, the chamber was actually discovered just between Tim’s hole and Ken’s first hole where soft sand connected the two. Thus the importance of feeling the sides of the hole you dig to see if you have soft sand (or maybe a ghost crab tunnel – those guys are sneaky).

Dennis and Jenna carefully handling the eggs, getting them ready for transport.

An egg was taken for the DNA Research Project while its 90 siblings were transported cautiously to a new location further up the beach. The team had to keep an eye out for the creeping tide to make sure that all of the eggs were moved before being washed over! Fortunately all were transported safely to their new home that had the same measurements  and characteristics as their original nest! (how egg-celent!) The site was then marked off to be looked after until the much anticipated hatching time!

Nest #07 Response Team! Smiles all around.