When out for a walk on Edisto Beach State Park, you may come across one of these posts. These posts are to mark our buried temperature loggers. This season we have buried six temperature loggers along our 1.5 mile stretch of beach. If you scroll a few posts down, you will come across more information on why temperature is important and how it can influence the sea turtle hatchlings.
We are excited to begin collecting sand temperature data this season and are looking forward to learning more!
We are hosting a beach clean-up on Earth Day, Friday April 22nd. We will meet up at the white office building in the day-use area of our park. It will be a great way to celebrate Earth Day and help to create a squeaky clean beach before the arrival of our sea turtles.
We will begin around 9am and you can pick up as much or as little as you would like!
Looking forward to seeing you then!
We are happy to share that the shorebird fencing was installed today. It runs for roughly half a mile down the beach to Jeremy's Inlet. Last season we had several Wilson's Plovers and Least Terns nest successfully. These species are also considered threatened, as their population is lower then it should be.
Just a reminder that if you are visiting the beach, to stay out of this roped off area and to keep your dogs on a leash, as even a friendly and good behaving dog can frighten the shorebirds. These birds are highly susceptible to disturbance and will choose to leave and nest elsewhere if they deem the area unsuitable.
Thank you for caring for the other species that nest on the beach!
Do you know the difference between shorebirds and seabirds?
Diet - They have different diets. Shorebirds prefer to feed on invertebrates found in the soil, whereas seabirds feed on fish
Nesting - Shorebirds are solitary nesters, whereas seabirds prefer to nest in colonies
Defense - Shorebirds use camouflage and distraction to protect the nest, whereas seabirds defend nests by dive bombing, calling loudly, etc.
The Wilson's Plover is a shorebird and the Least Tern is a seabird.
This past Tuesday, we received a call to the Environmental Learning Center about a possible sea turtle in distress. The lady that called it in spotted it on the town beach side and noticed the turtle could be seen at the surface for over an hour but it was 60 yards offshore.
I grabbed my binoculars to see if I could get a better look. Well it was not just one sea turtle but two! It was mating loggerhead sea turtles. They continued drifting down the beach until they were in front of the state park campground. Another hour passed until they finally departed under the sea.
This is a rare sight from the beach and we were lucky to have our Assistant Interpreter, Brandi, out and ready with her telephoto lens to capture it!
With this sight, we sure are hoping for a busy nesting season. It is less than a month away now until our daily patrols begin!
Sea Turtle Biologist