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

Calls came into the NEST hotline “There is a turtle laying eggs on the beach”  ATV rider Denise makes her way down the beach in search of a turtle mom and her newly created nest.  Below is the track where the turtle crawled onto the beach and laid her eggs.  Is this turtle trying to hide in the sand?  No, as she digs her nest, her body weight creates a crater called a body pit.

Loggerhead turtle laying eggs on the beach

After mom completes laying her eggs, she throws sand over the nest to hide it and heads back to the ocean for a much deserved rest.  Notice all the sand covering her shell, she worked very hard to hide those eggs.

Turtle heading back out to sea after laying eggs

Now the responding team jumps into action.  First they analyze the nest location.  Unfortunately this turtle put her nest too close to the average high tide line, and the team will need to relocate it closer to the dune for protection.

Responding team analyzes nest site

The responders split into two teams.  One team will work to locate the eggs.  They will carefully extract the eggs from the nest and place them into – egg cartons of course!  Each egg is picked up and kept in the same orientation as it is found in the nest.  A turtle embryo attaches itself to the top of the egg, and changing its orientation can break that bond and the turtle will stop developing.

Locating the eggs


Collecting eggs from the original nest

Once all the eggs are collected, the first team measures the depth, width and length of the now empty egg chamber.  The second team will create a new nest site with the exact same dimensions.  As the second team begins digging the new nest, the first team delivers the egg cartons.  Eggs are carefully put into the new nest in the same order as they were found in the original nest.  This means the last egg taken out will be the first egg put into the new nest.

Placing the eggs into the new nest site


Responding team members place eggs into the new nest

Nest 4 Responding Team – Our Heroes

It is a team effort to relocate a turtle nest.  There were lots of wonderful NEST volunteers working together to make this transition a smooth operation. Thank You Nest #4 volunteers!  Great job relocating the nest and talking with all our amazing visitors who stopped by to see and learn about sea turtles.






  • nest number: 4
  • town: Corolla
  • date eggs laid: 06/23/2023
  • actual emergence date: 8/18/2023
  • live hatchlings: 113
  • total eggs: 118

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