SEA TURTLE NEST MONITORING
Every morning during nesting season we patrol St. Pete Beach starting half an hour before sunrise. We look for turtle tracks in the sand indicating a turtle has come ashore to lay her eggs. We also have a team patrolling Shell and Outback Keys each morning via boat. We locate the nest, mark the nest to protect it, and collect data. After 50-60 days of incubation, the nest hatches. Three days later, we conduct an inventory to gather additional data for FWC on the fate of the nest. Our volunteers also serve as ambassadors to visitors and local residents, teaching them about the work we do and how they can help.
SEA TURTLE STRANDING & SALVAGE
Throughout the year we continue to help stranded sea turtles in our area to get to nearby rehabilitation facilities for care. Live strandings are rescued and transported to properly permitted rehabilitation facilities. Stranding data collected on a standardized reporting form include date, species, location, carapace length and width, carcass condition, carcass disposition, and information on anomalies (e.g., entanglement, propeller damage, and fibropapillomas).
COMMUNITY OUTREACH & CONSERVATION
We work cooperatively with our local community to improve the condition of our beaches. Our goal is to make St. Pete Beach as turtle-friendly as possible while helping visitors and residents enjoy this great place. We conduct beach clean-ups, help local businesses switch to turtle-safe lighting and make other environmentally friendly changes, and work with local government and law enforcement to enhance and ensure protection of sea turtles and their nests. Sea Turtle Trackers is proud to be a member of the Suncoast Rise Above Plastics Coalition, working with other local environmental groups to reduce or eliminate the dependence on single-use plastics like straws and plastic bags. Learn more here.
We do a Turtle Tuesday Talk every Tuesday at the Guy Harvey Outpost Resort on St. Pete Beach. We also visit many schools throughout the year and participate in the Great American Teach In every fall. Sea Turtle Trackers takes every opportunity to educate visitors and residents on the importance of caring for our local ecosystem. Volunteers staff booths at events, we give away activity books for children, and visit local community groups.
We have experienced speakers available to come talk with your students, clubs, associations, congregations, or other groups of interested sea turtle enthusiasts. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in having us present to your group.