Sea Turtles

$569 Raised * $10,000 Goal
Current Project

Identifying Beach Lighting Hotspots To Protect Sea Turtle Hatchlings

SeaWorld
Newly hatched, endangered sea turtles are a lot like celebrities! They are attracted to lights. As they emerge from their sandy nest, something instinctual tells them to go toward “the light” to find their way to the ocean where they will live for the rest of their lives. This is great if “the light” is the moon, but often “the light” is man-made and the hatchlings head away from the ocean instead of toward it.

Through support from the SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund, the Sea Turtle Conservancy has developed a cool, new technology that allows a plane to fly over hundreds of miles of sea turtle nesting areas each season and record light levels created by homes and businesses along the beaches. When the plane finds an area too bright, it records the location and volunteers can then go out and help the homeowner or business turn the lights down so sea turtles will go toward the ocean when they hatch. Sometimes celebrities need a little help.

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Help our Sea Turtles

Did you know that the largest leatherback turtle was recorded weighing 916 kg (2,019 lbs)? That's as big as an elephant, a whale or even a small car! Sea turtles can be found in warm and temperate seas throughout the world. Adults tend to hang out in shallow coastal waters but younger sea turtles can also be found out at sea. Sea turtles hatch from eggs buried in the sand near the water and can live to be 80 years old if they survive the treacherous journey from their nest to the water. More than 90% of hatchlings are eaten by predators like raccoons, dogs, seabirds, fishes and ghost crabs.