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Topsail Island has 26 miles of coastline.
Each mile is surveyed every morning to identify sea turtle tracks and nests from May through August.
SEA TURTLES  DIG THE DARK
Please keep oceanfront lighting to a minimum.  Lights disorient nesting mothers and lead hatchlings away from the sea, a trip they cannot survive.
In North Carolina the nesting season is mid-May through August.
The Loggerhead Sea Turtle comes ashore to nest 3 to 5 times during a nesting year.
She deposits an average of 120 eggs per nest.
The eggs will incubate in the sand for about 60 days.

After all the hatchlings have pipped out of their eggs, 
they emerge from the nest together and race to the sea.
Weighing in at about two ounces, their first challenge on our beach
is escaping the deadly grasp of the ghost crabs.
Once in the water they must hide from both bird and fish predators, 
and the swim to sea weed rafts and the Sargasso Sea begins.

It is a long swim to maturity.
It is estimated that 1 in 1000 survives the first year,
and as few as 1 in 5,000 - 10,000 survive to adulthood.
No one has the answer to this.
In 20 to 30 years the surviving hatchlings will reach adulthood.
The females will return to their natal beaches to lay their eggs and the cycle begins again.

5 sec video clip 1

  Surprise daylight visitor
 This sea turtle came to nest about 5 PM.
  

5 sec video clip 2
  She left behind nest 125 eggs.

 
Beach Patrol

Covering 26 miles, rain and shine, every morning,
the many, the proud, (some of) the beach patrol 2015

2015
TB = Topsail Beach    SC = Surf City (north/south of bridge)   NTB = North Topsail Beach ( north/south of bridge)
Date        
Nest     
Location   
Hatch Date #Eggs/#Hatch
May 17
1
SC-n


May 18
2
NTB-n


May 24
3
NTB-s


May 26
4
SC-s


May 26
5
NTB-n


May 26
6
NTB-s


May 27
7
TB


May 29
8
NTB-s


May 30
9
TB


May 30
10
NTB-n


May 31
11
NTB-n


June 1
12
NTB-n


June 1
13
SC-s


June 1
14
TB


June 2
15
TB


June 3
16
NTB-n


June 5
17
TB


June 5
18
NTB-n


June 8pm 19
NTB-s


June 9 20
NTB-n


June 10 21
SC-s


June 12 22
NTB-s


June 12 23
NTB-n


June 12 24
NTB-n


June 13 25
NTB-n


June 14 26
SC-n


June 15 27
SC-s


June 15 28
NTB-s


June 17 29
SC-n


June 17 30
NTB-n


June 17 31
SC-s


June18 32
NTB-n


June 18 33
NTB-n


June 19 34
SC-n


June 19
35
NTB-n


June 20
36
NTB-n


June 23
37
SC-s


June 23
38
SC-s


June 24
39
TB


June 25
40
SC-s


June 25
41
SC-n





YEAR
TOTAL #
Crawls
# Nests
# False Crawls
# Eggs
# Live Hatchlings
# Unhatched Eggs
2014
142
53
89
6523
5131
1392
2013
302
136
166
15,481
11,113
4,368
2012
160
85
75
9,869
8,080
1,789
2011
213
110
103
12,142
9369
2,773
2010
188
104
84
12,150
10,058
2,092
2009
105
59
46
7315
5804
1,450
2008
152
89
63
10,112*
8212
1,102
2007
111
61
50
7,146
5,152
1,832
2006
166
94
72
9,838*
7,750
1.179
2005 105
72
43
7,460*
5,107
1,244
2004
98
55
43
6,783
5,349
1,219
2003
134
80
54
9,882
8,260
1,531
2002
162
86
76
10,307
8,866
1,246
2001
130
79
51
  9,045
7,721
1,271

 

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