January 25, 2013

Help Sea Turtles Every Time you Drive!

Protecting sea turtles benefits Florida's beaches and ocean waters
Florida's sea turtles are the ambassadors for our oceans. Home to more than 90% of sea turtle nesting in the United States, Florida's iconic sea turtles rely on healthy coastal and marine habitats for their survival. Safeguarding Florida's sea turtles requires the long-term protection of our beaches for nesting and the preservation of reefs and sea grass beds where sea turtles forage for food and simply hang out. Many of the "hard-bottom" reef habitats extensively utilized by sea turtles have been federally designated and protected as "essential Fish Habitat," so protecting turtles also goes hand in hand with supporting healthy fisheries and Florida's angling community. Sea turtles of all ages can be found almost year-round in our lagoons and estuaries and they are an indicator of the health of these economically-vital marine areas.

Buying a Sea Turtle License Plate is one of the best ways to support Florida's sea turtles
Seventy percent of all the money raised by the sale of the Sea Turtle License Plate goes directly to fund the state's Marine Turtle Protection Program, which carries out education, research, and regulatory functions within the Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission. These voluntary contributions, not general tax revenues, fund this nationally-recognized program. The remaining 30% is disbursed to the Florida-based Sea Turtle Conservancy to support the Sea Turtle Grants Program, which provides competitive funding for sea turtle research, conservation and education programs benefiting Florida's sea turtles. The Sea Turtle Grants Program has become an important funding source for local nonprofits, coastal governments, marine research programs, and aquariums working to protect turtles in Florida.

Content courtesy of: http://www.helpingseaturtles.org/

January 2, 2013

The City Dark: How Lights Can Confuse Baby Turtles

This short segment of "The City Dark" from the PBS show POV provides a great explanation of how sea turtle hatchlings navigate to the water and why beachfront lighting is a problem. There's even footage of hatchlings making their way to the water (or at least trying!)