Nesting Sea Turtle Adventure

Nesting Sea Turtle Adventure

 

On the evening of June 20, 2015, a group of Nature Center members attended a “Nesting Sea Turtle Adventure”. I’ll let a couple of people who attended this Nature Center members only event tell you about it.  Be sure to click on the photos to see get a closer look.

First, Gary Wittstock gives an excellent summary of the adventure:

“This was a Nature Center sponsored “Turtle Walk” on Playa Linda to watch a female sea turtle lay her eggs (100+), cover the nest and head back to the ocean. I think she started digging around 9-9:30 PM and headed back to the ocean around 12:30 AM. The 1/4 sliver moon was mostly obscured by clouds so the primary light source was from flashlights covered in red cellophane. The red lights are  necessary to minimize disturbance to the turtle and we were called up to the nest site only after she started the egg laying. Spotters called us with the location as we waited in the parking lot trying to avoid the mosquitoes as best we could. Fin Tripod was named by the group as her back right flipper was just a stump, but she sure knew how to use her remaining flippers. An incredible task for her to crawl with her 350-400 lbs or so 50+ yards to the edge of the dunes, dig this 2 feet deep nest using only 1 flipper, lay the eggs then laboriously cover the nest completely before heading back to the water.” Gary Wittstock

Gary took the photos below. The first photo is a presentation by Nancy Corona, the Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge ranger.

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Gary Wittstock

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Gary Wittstock

 

The photo below shows the eggs and Fin Tripod’s damaged flipper. Be sure to click on the photo to zoom in for a better look.

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Gary Wittstock

 

Fin Tripod heads back out to sea.

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Gary Wittstock

 

We received this email from Gail Stairs after the adventure:

“Sandy, just wanted to say a GIANT thank you to you, Betty, and Nancy at the Wildlife Center. It truly was an unforgettable event. I have NEVER seen anything like that so for me it was AMAZING (and I do not use that word lightly). I am soooo happy that the group hung in there so that we got to see her go back out to sea. Thank you for all the correspondences and keeping us abreast of what would happen. Those who couldn’t come/chose not to come missed out on a beautiful evening. Tu again, Gail” Gail Stairs

Gail is referring to Sandy Juba, Betty Salter and Nancy Corona, the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge ranger. Thank you ladies!

According to Betty Salter: “It takes a long time to lay 100 eggs.”

Enjoy these photos that Better Salter took of the adventure.

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Betty Salter

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Betty Salter

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Betty Salter

 

Now that the job is done, Fin Tripod heads back to the sea!

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Betty Salter

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Betty Salter

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Betty Salter

 

TGO Nature Center, Nature, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, Education, Field, Trip, Nesting, Sea, Turtle, Adventure

Photo Courtesy of Betty Salter

 

We will be having more of these member only events so if you are an owner or renter at The Great Outdoors, be sure to become a member to be notified of future events. Click on this membership link to read all the benefits of being a member and to print off a membership application.

 

TGO Nature Center – “Living in Harmony with Nature

Contact Us

To reserve the meeting room, contact:

Josiah Monk at Recreation Services for reservations on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings and Tuesday and Thursday afternoons.

Loretta Anne’ for all other times.