It’s sea turtle nesting season in Florida. The season began yesterday and extends through August, but wildlife officials say the hatchlings can emerge as late as October. Last year, Lee County beaches were home to 680 turtle nests. Adult turtles and their hatchlings use the seaward horizon as their guiding light and may be lured away from the water by artificial light visible from the beach. Fort Myers Beach residents and visitors can help prevent this by observing these tips from 9 p.m. to 8 a.m.:
- Shield sources of light visible from the beach
- Use 25-watt yellow bug lights or amber-colored LED lights (go to MyFWC to find such certified lighting)
- Close blinds or curtains after dark
- Remove beach furniture and equipment
To report sea turtle tracks and disorientations (lost sea turtles), or to request additional educational material, or ask questions about sea turtle season, go to Turtle Time or call 481-5566.
Florida’s Marine Turtle Protection Act protects sea turtles during the six-month sea turtle season. It is illegal to disturb, harass, or take sea turtles or their eggs. For code enforcement issues, contact Town Environmental Sciences Coordinator Keith Laakkonen at 765-0202 (ext. 136).