Season for Sea Turtles
It’s turtle season! Sea turtles are making way and stretching out from winter hibernation. They are now in search of finding the perfect mate and nesting areas along the beaches. Did you know that sea turtles love our beaches? Tracks may be spotted in the sand as sea turtles come ashore, testing the nesting grounds. Sadly, sea turtles are steadily dropping placing them on the endangered species list. Sea turtles spook easily from bright lights and loud noises which is often due to development on the beach, causing them to often retreat back into the ocean. Plantation Resort is dedicated to helping sea turtles not only survive but thrive on our local beaches. Of course there are things we can all do to make them feel welcome.
History of World Turtle Day
May is a highly active month for all types of turtles including sea turtles that is why May 23rd is celebrated as World Turtle Day. According to the Human Society of the United States, “World Turtle Day was initiated in 2000 by the American Tortoise Rescue, a turtle and tortoise rescue organization founded in 1990 in Malibu, California. The group brings attention to turtle conservation issues and highlights ways each of us can help protect these gentle but jeopardized animals.” Many turtle species are suffering and becoming limited in numbers which is why it is important to recognize this day. World Turtle Day is a time to take necessary measures to ultimately cut down on the harmful damage done to their habitat. World Turtle Day is often celebrated through volunteering, spreading the word, and research. One of the major reasons turtles are endangered is due to harm to their habitat.
How can you help?
- Stay off the dunes. This is where sea turtles lay their eggs.
- Don’t pick sea oats. These plants help maintain the health of the dune by providing structure and adding essential nutrients for the eggs in the soil.
- Don’t pollute or litter. Turtles can get very sick due to consuming plastic bags and other materials.
- Please take all items with you. Items such as beach chairs, bags, and towels can cause turtles to feel cornered or confused when they encounter these objects.
- Even out sand. It’s super fun to dig holes and build up sand castles, but when you’re finished it’s important to fill in the hole and knock down the castle. Sea turtles can get caught on these obstacles as they make their way to the dunes to lay their eggs.
- Turn off the lights. Artificial lighting can distract and disorient them which can lead them straight towards a predator.
- Don’t set off fireworks. Sea turtles can become frightened by the noise and swim away. Sometimes they also eat the debris causing sickness.
- Spread the word. Encourage folks to make an effort and become active in helping this endangered species.
- Donate to the cause. Plantation Resort loves sea turtles, which is why we are accepting donations at the Activity Center during our Totally Turtles Activity.
Why Sea Turtles?
Sea turtles grant a certain air of grace and wonder to our oceans which would be greatly missed if we lost these creatures to extinction. They are one of very few animals that eat ocean grass regulating the growth. Their eggs also play an important role in keeping the delicate sand dunes healthy by providing essential nutrients to the dune grasses. With their important egg-laying role, these turtles are helping to keep our beloved sand dunes looking beautiful.
Plantation Resort Loves Sea Turtles
At only 2 miles from Surfside Beach, Plantation Resort is an excellent place to make your base as you pursue active turtle rescue. To try and raise awareness about turtles, we host a sea turtle activity called, Totally Turtles. Our guests learn about keeping the beach clean for our beloved sea creatures as they create adorable sea turtle mosaics. Be sure to bring your children to the activity this summer for some educational fun! Call 1-800-845-5039 for more information about how to make your reservation at Plantation Resort.
- Become active in habitat preservation through turtle walks and educating others.
- Myrtle Beach State Park provides an array of turtle programs and activities open for the public.
- Ripley’s Aquarium of Myrtle Beach is an educational and adventurous place to learn and explore with the family. Go and see turtles in action!
Want to know more?