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Tampa Bay Estuary Program

A PORTRAIT OF THE TAMPA BAY ESTUARY

Sea Turtles

Portrait of the Tampa Bay Estuary - sea turtles

Nesting season, which stretches from April to the end of October, brings sea turtles ashore on Gulf beaches, where people and predators may pose a threat. Although three species - the loggerhead, the green turtle, and the leatherback - commonly nest along Florida's coastline, most nests in the Tampa Bay area belong to loggerheads.

YOU CAN HELP:

  • Never approach sea turtles coming ashore or disturb nesting sea turtles or hatchlings. Turtles produce many eggs, but few hatchlings survive the difficult journey back to sea.

  • Volunteers mark sea turtle nests every summer. Please don't disturb these nests or remove signs or tape identifying the nests.

  • Preserve nesting beaches and nearshore habitats such as seagrass beds and coral reefs.

  • Beachfront property owners should turn off exterior lights in areas where nesting takes place. Bright lights discourage nesting turtles from coming ashore and may disorient hatchlings.

  • Support public and private efforts to protect sea turtles and their habitats.


 
 
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