It was a rare sighting. Alyson McCoy, of Oviedo, and staff members from Island House Motel, on Casey Key, watched as a female turtle came ashore during the day Saturday, April 25, and laid her nest on Casey Key beach.
“I’ve seen loggerhead turtles nest before on New Smyrna Beach, but I’ve never seen one by accident and never in broad daylight,” McCoy said.
McCoy sent photos of the turtle to Mote Marine Laboratory, and Mote staff members confirmed it was a Kemp’s ridley turtle, which are smaller, flatter and grayer in color than loggerheads.
The nest, which marks the first of the turtle-nesting season in Sarasota County, is only the third Kemp’s ridley nest to be laid and verified in Sarasota County.
Tony Tucker, manager of Mote’s sea-turtle conservation and research program, said the state only recorded 13 Kemp’s ridley nests in 2008. This turtle species usually nests on the beaches of Tamaulipas, Mexico, and Padre Island National Seashore, Texas.
“It’s exciting to have a Kemp’s ridley turn up in our county,” Tucker said.
The nest will be monitored daily by Mote’s sea-turtle conservation and research program, which monitors 35 miles of Sarasota County beach.
Sea-turtle nesting season runs from May 1 to October 31.
Information courtesy of Mote Marine Laboratory, www.mote.org.
Kemp’s ridley sea turtles
— The smallest of all living sea turtles, with an adult weighing about 100 pounds.
— Females lay two to three clutches of eggs, which have 100 eggs each. The eggs incubate for 50 to 60 days.
— Hatchlings measure about 1.5 inches and weigh about half an ounce.
— Almost 95% of Kemp’s ridley nesting occurs in Tamaulipas, Mexico.
Currently 0 Responses
18 9th annual Leadership Breakfast honoring Nancy Detert and Teri Hansen
18 SMART PARENTS / SMART KIDS FREE SEMINAR
6:30 pm - 7:30 pm
19 American Business Women's Assocation-Sunset Chapter Monthly Meeting
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
19 Tuscany by Night!
High Five Moments of the Week
The top five sports moments of the week.
A climb for heroes
Joining with firemen from Central Florida, the Suncoast FOOLS firefighters gathered Saturday, at Plymouth Harbor, to pay homage to the fallen heroes of Sept. 11.
Student's art gains national exposure
ART.WRITE.NOW.DC, a year-long exhibit featuring works of art and writing and hosted in the lobby of the Lyndon Baines Johnson Department of Education Building in Washington, D.C., opens Sept. 19.