Walton County has a Wildlife Lighting Ordinance which provides guidelines for proper light management. For information on local lighting regulations and to see the complete ordinance, visit Walton County’s website.
For information on sea turtle friendly lights go to the following:
Walton County Lighting Ordinance
This turtle was released by the well meaning public with hooks still in it and will die, it should have been taken to help.
The women involved called me today and wanted me to know that some folks on the beach wanted to call someone but the fishermen there were under the opinion that if you cut the line the fishhook then would dissolve. This is not true, they may rust away but that takes time and the hook can do a lot of damage to the turtle while waiting for this to happen. Also the fishing line gets wrapped around different parts of the turtle some in it’s mouth. This in itself can kill the sea turtle, I have taken fishing line off a turtle when it was wrapped around it’s neck and also around it’s flippers and can’t swim. So just cutting the line is not enough. If you have caught a sea turtle you must bring it to shore and call the proper people to get the turtle the medical help it needs. Don’t just cut the line and let it become the problem for the turtle, when it is your hook and line.
SOUTH WALTON PERMITS BONFIRES ON BEACHES, BUT A PERMIT MUST BE OBTAINED AND NO FIRES CLOSE TO SEA TURTLE NESTS, PLEASE, BE A GOOD TURTLE FRIEND.
IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN BECOMING A SEA TURTLE WATCH VOLUNTEER FOR OUR 2013 SEASON, PLAN ON ATTENDING THIS WORKSHOP PUT ON BY THE STATE. IT IS A MUST AND THIS IS THE TRAINING YOU WILL NEED. ALSO PLEASE CALL ME, SHARON MAXWELL AT 850-897-5228, AND TALK TO ME ABOUT OUR WALKING AREAS, OUR WALKS TAKE PLACE AT ABOUT 5:30 A.M. DAILY FROM MAY THROUGH OCTOBER AND YOU WILL BE REQUIRED TO WALK AT LEAST ONE DAY A WEEK. CALL ME IN FEBRUARY OF 2013.
Tuesday, 2 April 2013, 10:00am – 2:00pm Central Standard Time
Gulf Coast State College – Student Union East/Conference Center, 2nd Floor, 5230 West Hwy 98, Panama City, (850) 769-1551
From northwest of Panama City, get onto US 98 E. Turn left onto Alabama Ave. Turn left onto US 98W. Cross Hathaway Bridge, and GCCC will be on your left. From southeast of Panama City, go SW on US 319 toward CR-67. US 319 becomes US 98. GCCC will be on your right before Hathaway Bridge.
Who could have foreseen the BP oil disaster and how it was to affect sea turtle nesting.
The problems it brought were many, here are just a few.
Extra reports and interface with local, state and federal officials as well as with the media.
We watched different owners, condos, and hotels, take action into their own hands to keep the oil out with no regard to sea turtle habitat.
Extra work to do our daily monitoring while every kind of vehicle that was on our beaches day and night.
Working with day and night cleaning to keep everyone on track.
Try to keep all the different agencies on the beach off until we could do our daily monitoring.
Moving nests at the correct time.
Caging nest to prevent hatchlings from going into the oil in the gulf.
Educate folks to what was going on.
People handling, extra effort is given to explain what and why sea turtles do what they do.
And if that was not enough we had nest predated by red fox, coyote and dogs. For the second year in a row we have had domesticated dogs digging up our nests and killing hatchlings, this is a problem to be addressed with Walton County.
1 Kemps Ridley nest
30 Loggerhead nest
21 false crawls- as you can see this number is more than double or usual number
13 nests relocated to the East Coast
4 nests that hatched into cages and hatchlings moved to the East Coast for release
7 nest were Predated many hatchlings lost
SPECIAL THANKS TO ALL THE VOLUNTEERS OF SOUTH WALTON TURTLE WATCH GROUP FOR ALL THEIR EFFORTS THIS SUMMER, I KNOW IT WAS VERY HARD GOING BUT YOU DID A GREAT JOB AND YOU DO MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE. I WILL KEEP YOU ON FOR NEXT YEAR.
After relocating two nests this morning we got a call about a sea turtle in the surf near Camp Creek Lake, we were able to get her out of the water and she was alive but weak, she had some oil on her, and a gauze sample of this was taken. She is now at Gulf World, and I will check on her in a couple of days.
Great news out of the nests we caged and sent to the East Coast. We sent 270 hatchlings out of 3 nests and only 1, yes, only 1 died on the way. So thanks so much team. Hope they come back to our white sandy beaches.
On June 2, 2010 Kelly found a Loggerhead Sea Turtle nest in Walton County. This nest was to close to the high tide line and was moved straight back. Because of the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico the nests were to be relocated into coolers and transported to the East Coast of Florida. When this nest was dug into to be relocated it was found that some eggs were already piping. Piping is when the sea turtle hatchlings brake open the egg. The nest was quickly reburied and a cage put over it to catch the hatchlings so they would not hatch and go into the Gulf of Mexico. Two days later an indentation appeared in the nest and that night volunteers Sherry and Anthony watched the nest. About 9 p.m. the hatchlings started to appear. They wanted to go to the water. The hatchlings, 91 in all were gathered up and up into two separate coolers and kept overnight. Early the next morning Bob Reddick and his Fed Ex truck were waiting to take the hatchlings to the East Coast to be released into the Atlantic. With great care the coolers were strapped in for their ride to meet Bob. The coolers were labeled and the volunteers present introduced Bob to our Hatchlings. The hatchlings in the coolers were very happy to be going to the water. Bob took his time and got the coolers securely into the truck and away the hatchlings went with the words “Come back and nest here in Walton County.