Cape Hatteras Sea Turtle Population Thrives with 378 Nests in 2023

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According to Outer Banks Forever, the official nonprofit partner of Cape Hatteras National Seashore, more than 370 nests were tracked along the park’s beaches during the 2023 nesting season, resulting in an estimated 25,000 sea turtle hatchlings making their way to the sea this summer.

Outer Banks Forever was established in 2019 to support Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, and Wright Brothers National Memorial.

Cape Hatteras National Seashore officials estimate that 19% of all sea turtle nests in the state were found on their beaches, highlighting the importance of the park’s conservation efforts for these vulnerable species.

The success of the nesting season is a positive sign for the health and survival of sea turtles in the region and underscores the importance of continued efforts to protect their habitats.

During the 2023 nesting season, park staff at Cape Hatteras National Seashore tracked 378 sea turtle nests.

Source: www.carolinacoastonline.com

Of those, 86% were loggerheads, 50 were green sea turtles, three were Kemp’s Ridleys, and one was a leatherback nest.

Outer Banks Forever Director Jessica Barnes expressed gratitude for the park staff’s efforts in protecting sea turtles, their nests, and their habitats, saying, “Sea turtles are some of our favorite visitors here in the Outer Banks.

We’re so grateful to our national park staff who help protect the sea turtles, their nests, and the habitat they need to thrive.

Each donor who adopts a nest on the Seashore helps us invest in protecting and enhancing this amazing place.”

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The tracking of sea turtle nests and hatchlings is crucial to understanding and protecting these vulnerable species, and the success of the nesting season is a positive sign for the health and survival of sea turtles in the region.

The continued efforts to protect sea turtles and their habitats are essential to ensure their continued existence and the health of ocean ecosystems.

The total number of sea turtle eggs counted during the 2023 nesting season at Cape Hatteras National Seashore was 39,085, with an average of 119 eggs per nest and an average incubation time of 56 days.

Outer Banks Forever’s Adopt a Sea Turtle Nest program was successful in raising $28,987 through the adoption of 283 nests by supporters of the nonprofit.

The funds raised will be used to support projects and programs at Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

The Adopt a Sea Turtle Nest program and other conservation efforts are essential in protecting and preserving sea turtles and their habitats, ensuring their continued existence and the health of ocean ecosystems.

The success of the program and the nesting season is a positive sign for the future of sea turtles in the Outer Banks region and highlights the importance of continued conservation efforts.

When Do Sea Turtle Eggs Hatch?

The incubation period for most sea turtle eggs is between 50 to 70 days, with warm temperatures being necessary for baby sea turtles to hatch within two months. Typically, baby sea turtles hatch between 9 pm to 5 am.

Different species of sea turtles lay their eggs at different times, resulting in different hatching periods around the world.

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For example, leatherback sea turtles lay their eggs in Florida between March and August, and the hatching period is between May and October.

Loggerhead sea turtles nest in June, and the nesting period lasts until late July, resulting in hatching occurring in August and September.

Understanding the nesting and hatching periods of different sea turtle species is essential in protecting and conserving these vulnerable species.

The continued efforts to protect and preserve sea turtles and their habitats are necessary to ensure their survival and the health of ocean ecosystems.

That’s correct. The timing of sea turtle hatching varies depending on the species and location.

¬†For example, Kemp’s Ridley Sea turtles nest in Texas’s Gulf Shores between March to May, with hatchlings emerging from the nests in late May or early July.

Green and hawksbill turtles come to the remote shores of the Parthenian Islands of Malaysia to lay eggs in late April to June, with hatchlings breaking free from the eggs in late June and August.

Despite the differences in hatching periods, most sea turtle eggs hatch during the summer when the weather is warm. The warm temperatures are necessary for the eggs to incubate properly and for the hatchlings to emerge from the nests.

Understanding the hatching periods of different sea turtle species is essential in protecting and conserving these vulnerable creatures and their habitats. Interested in learning more? Check out this article on When Do Sea Turtle Eggs Hatch?

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Muntaseer Rahman started keeping pet turtles back in 2013. He also owns the largest Turtle & Tortoise Facebook community in Bangladesh. These days he is mostly active on Facebook.

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