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Saturday, June 4, 2011

NEST #3!!!

Several people walking on Crescent Beach around 9PM came across a Loggerhead Sea Turtle as she emerged from the ocean.  These people were very respectful of her, watched quietly and in the dark as she crawled up the beach and started digging.  North Myrtle Beach Sea Turtle Patrol was notified, Rob arrived on the scene while the turtle was still nesting.

She was on the beach for about 2 hours, ending her egg laying by throwing sand up in the air.  She quickly turned and ran back into the sea.
Below is the V made in her track from her claw.  Picture of incoming track, already disappearing in the soft sand.

By 6:30 AM, the only evidence of her crawl was this track in the wet sand at the high tide line.  The rakers had already raked over the middle part of the crawl and the upper part had disappeared in the soft, dry sand. 

After Linda probed and found the egg chamber, Judy, Mary and Kate started searching for those eggs!

BINGO!!  What a great sight!

Rob and Linda moving the 141 eggs, one at a time.

The last two eggs were more oval than round.

Old, dried, empty turtle egg shells were found in the sand covering the eggs. Hatched eggs from a previous year's nest?

Rick helping to transfer the eggs into the new, freshly dug hole, located further back at the base of the dunes, out of the way of beach traffic on this busy beach.

Finished at last!  Thank you Joe for this great group picture.

 Our volunteers start walking at sunrise every morning.  Many mornings they are rewarded by beautiful sunrises!  Thank you Joe for this beautiful picture.

Thank you all who came to the nesting site this morning.  A big thank you to the Walkers who saw the nesting turtle and observed her quietly so she could complete her task undisturbed.  And thank you Joe for your great pictures.

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