Loggerhead Marinelife Center biologists revealed the first leatherback sea turtle nest of 2016. The experts suspect that this discovered nest is the first in Florida, possibly the first in the United States. It was located approximately 100 feet south of the popular Juno Beach Pier.
The significance of locating the first leatherback sea turtle nest is that it signals all beach lovers, residents and visitors to be consciously aware of the possibility of other nests in the area. Loggerhead Marinelife Center field operations manager, Adrienne McCracken said “this is especially important for Martin and Palm Beach counties, as they are the epicenter in the of leatherback nesting in the continental United States.” She also stated, “We would like to encourage all beachgoers and residents to follow best practices to share the beach with wildlife, including our sea turtles.”
The Loggerhead biologists will continue to monitor the clutch of eggs. The Juno Beach staff will monitor the marked nest for the next two months to determine the nest’s hatching success.
Leatherback sea turtles are the biggest turtles in the world. They can grow up to seven feet long and more than 2,000 pounds. These cold-blooded old timers are the only remaining representatives of a family of turtles that traces its evolutionary roots back more than 100 million years. Leatherbacks were once dominant in every ocean with the exception of the Arctic Ocean and Antarctic Ocean. Sadly, the leatherback population is quickly decreasing in many parts of the world that it why it is essential to protect these nests.
If you would like to support the conservation of the Leatherback sea turtles, you can adopt a nest and support sea turtle research. For more information, please contact www.marinelife.org/adopt. or www.marinelife.org.