Network for Endangered Sea Turtles 24 HR. HOTLINE 252-441-8622

Yesterday there were 2 false crawls on the 4 wheel drive beach.  We knew a Loggerhead sea turtle was trying desperately to find the perfect spot for her precious eggs.  See how the turtles tracks come in and out at about the same spot.  This indicates the turtle did not spend much time on the beach.  It takes a turtle a couple of hours to lay a nest.  There is also no body pit or thrown sand.

False crawl below the high tide line

Second false crawl

 

 

 

 

 

 

When the hotline got the call a sea turtle was on the 4 wheel drive laying eggs at 3 am, we figure she finally found the right spot.  The response team headed out to the beach, catching just a glimpse of our sea turtle mom heading back into the ocean.  Now comes the fun part of trying to find exactly where she laid her eggs.  This sea turtle mom made it quite the challenge.  Normally, a sea turtle will crawl out towards the dune, lay her nest and head back to the sea.  Sea turtles leave a nice sized body pit as they work to dig their nest.  Then you find lots of thrown sand behind the body pit where she covers the egg chamber back up.

Example of a body pit and thrown sand indicating where the egg chamber is located

This turtle crawl had 2 body pits.  The first body pit was fairly big and had some thrown sand, the second body pit was less pronounced but had lots of thrown sand.  The team split up with one team looking for eggs at the first site and the second team looking for eggs at the second site.  The winner was the area with the most thrown sand!

Finally, the team finished collecting data and setting up the protective stakes needed to alert vehicles a turtle nest is on the beach.  Below is the finished nest site with Team Lead Tony making the final inspection.

Long reflective posts are set up to alert traffic of a turtle nest

Afterward, the team of Tony, Lisa, Andy and Debbie enjoyed the sunrise and headed home for a nap.  Congratulations on another successful 4 wheel drive beach nest.

Sunrise on a new day

 

 

  • nest number: 31
  • town: Swan
  • date eggs laid: 07/18/2022

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