Hello everyone, happy Monday! We’ve decided that we need to start this week off on a very high note, and we’re sure it will bring a smile to your faces! We have new baby turtles on St. John!
As you know, we love our sea turtles here at News of St. John. You can see turtles all around St. John, although it is a near guarantee that you can see them if you are snorkeling at Maho Bay on St. John’s North Shore. Well, you’re going to see more in the future because we just had a rather large nest of turtles on St. John hatch … how exciting! And even better, there are still more nests that are getting ready to hatch. I am so excited, and I know I’m not the only one. 🙂
“It is a fun time of year because there are still nests being laid as recently as October 10, Todd Sampsell, President of Friends of the Virgin Islands National Park, recently told us.
As of last week, we had 24 nests on St. John this turtle hatching season, Todd said. Of those, 17 were active and 7 hatched. Five of the seven nests were excavated by volunteers, and 421 hatchings made it out to sea.
Now if that doesn’t make you smile today, I’m, not sure what will.
Volunteers monitor and excavate the nests through Friends of the Park’s Sea Turtle Monitoring and Protection Program. In addition to monitoring the nests, the program provides advice to residents and guests on how to interact with turtles. They also provide education and outreach to children in our schools through Friends of the Park’s School Kids in the Park (SKIP) program.
The island’s sea turtle monitoring program is heavily dependent on volunteers and largely funded by Friends of the Park. You can monetarily support the program by visiting Friends of the Park’s website here. In the meantime, here are so more great photos courtesy of Jennifer Rittenhouse Pruss.