Coordinator Login

Coronavirus restrictions allowing leatherbacks to thrive

Date: 28-Apr-20
Author: Liam Taylor

One leatherback turtle, nicknamed 'Aussie', has been coming to Juno Beach, South Florida to nest for over a decade. Image: Loggerhead Marinelife Center

One leatherback turtle, nicknamed 'Aussie', has been coming to Juno Beach, South Florida to nest for over a decade. Image: Loggerhead Marinelife Center

With the nesting season just weeks old, marine researchers have reported a “significant” increase in the number of the endangered sea turtle species laying eggs.

Staff from the Loggerhead MarineLife Center on Juno Beach in South Florida have already marked and documented 76 leatherback nests along the 15km stretch of coastline. This represented a greatly elevated number from the same stage of the nesting season last year, with researchers suggesting the lack of humans and their associated waste is having a hugely beneficial impact on the endangered species.

It’s estimated that only about one in every thousand turtle hatchlings survive to adulthood, making it critical that as many nests are established as is possible. In areas affected by human activity turtles there is a much greater chance of nests disruption, but with coronavirus restrictions keeping people away the researchers are hopeful this could be a bumper season the leatherbacks and other vulnerable sea turtles.

“We’re excited to see our turtles thrive in this environment,” Sarah Hirsch, senior manager of research and data at the center, told West Palm Beach news channel 12

“Our world has changed, but these turtles have been doing this for millions of years and it’s just reassuring and gives us hope that the world is still going on.”

One of the first leatherback turtles to arrive at Juno Beach for nesting was a previously tagged animal who goes by the name “Aussie”. Aussie was first tagged way back in April 2011 and has been involved in numerous research studies on leatherback genetics, health, toxicology and more.

 

Positive Action

 

Subscribe to Positive Environment News
Positive Environment News has been compiled using publicly available information. Planet Ark does not take responsibility for the accuracy of the original information and encourages readers to check the references before using this information for their own purposes.

 




Liam                                              Taylor
Author: Liam Taylor

Liam is Planet Ark's Communications Coordinator. Prior to joining Planet Ark Liam spent his time studying global environmental issues, travelling Southeast Asia on the cheap and working for a sustainable property management company in Bali, Indonesia.



Related News: