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Sea Turtle News & Updates on Florida’s Gulf Coast

Sea Turtle News from Florida's Gulf Coast

Sea turtle nesting season is coming to a close here on the Gulf Coast of Florida (it ends at the end of October). By all accounts it has a been a good season this year, despite some storms and inclement weather. There are a lot of sea turtle success stories! A special shout out goes to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA) for all of their education, assistance and work with our local sea turtles, hatchlings and nests.

Here are some of the highlights of sea turtle nesting season this year.

Sea Turtle Hatchlings Found on Madeira Beach

This summer, the CMA responded to a call regarding 10 disoriented hatchlings found on on Madeira Beach. They were brought back to the aquarium for monitoring and once deemed healthy, they were returned to the beach for their big adventure back to sea.

Watch this clip and see how their life journey begins. Get ready to say, “Awwwww!” more than a few times. They are just so stinkin’ cute.

17 Sea Turtle “Washbacks” Rescued, Treated & Released

With over 70 sea turtle nests washed out by storms this year, hope lies with the 17 flippered fighters that were treated at the CMA. These “washbacks”, as they’re called, made it to the ocean but encountered harsh water conditions and rough seas that resulted in them finding their way back to land. After some TLC by the CMA staff, the young sea turtles were returned to the weed line (which is their natural habitat) where they can learn to survive and can find some protection by the vegetation as they adjust to life in the open waters. With help from a couple of local businesses, the sea turtles were placed at a favorable location 50-80 miles off the coastline to continue their life at sea. You can read more about the rescue and release of the washbacks here.

Sea Turtle Hatchling on Florida's Gulf Coast

CMA Sea Turtle Success Stories 2015

Charger, Ricky Bobby, Yoda, California, Yankovic, Urchin, Quest, Volusia, and Tamiami are only some of the names of the sea turtles that found success this year after rescue, rehabilitation and release from the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. Each has a unique story that landed them at the CMA; and every one has overcome to return back to the natural habitat. Click here to read up on each of the 2015 sea turtle success stories.

Thank you, thank you very much!

Thank you, Clearwater Marine Aquarium, for all that you do! There are many reasons to put the CMA on your Gulf Coast vacation itinerary, but this is only one of them. Don’t forget they’re part of the Tampa Bay CityPASS, so you get a major discount when you purchase the Pass for this and other must-see Florida Gulf Coast attractions.

Want to see how much you know about our local Gulf Coast sea turtles? Take our Sea Turtle IQ quiz!

Have you seen any sea turtle nests this summer on any of the gulf beaches?