It’s sea turtle season again on the Crystal Coast! We’ve got you covered with this Sea Turtle Tracker for 2019 to keep up to date on how many nests and eggs are laid on our local beaches. Check out the counts in Emerald Isle, Atlantic Beach, Indian Beach, Cape Lookout, and Fort Macon below!
The most common species of sea turtle in North Carolina is the loggerhead sea turtle. Only loggerhead, green, and leather-back sea turtles lay their eggs on North Carolina beaches. These species of sea turtles are listed as threatened or endangered in the United States.
1 Development and heavy traffic on beaches (that’s us!) that can disturb adults or destroy incubating eggs
2 Unintentional capture by fisherman in nets, which can lead to injury or even death
3 Accidental collisions with boater vessels
4 Beach cleanup and re-nourishment activities that can uncover or compact sea turtle nests
5 Our litter! General ocean pollution hurts sea turtles when they return to the ocean, especially plastic bags. Sea turtles can confuse these plastic bags with one of their main food sources – jellyfish.
What You Can Do to Help
Because many species of our native sea turtles are endangered, it is important to do our best to preserve their natural habitat. For the health and well-being of our sea turtles, please make sure to take these tips seriously when vacationing on the Crystal coast with us.
1 Remove all tents, toys, and beach gear overnight
2 Keep outside lights off at night
3 Pick up trash – especially plastic bags
4 Fill in all holes you, your kid(s), or your pet(s) dig
5 Stay back at least 30 feet – NO flashlights or flash photography – Stay quiet
6 Call the Emerald Isle Police at (252) 354-2021 or the Atlantic Beach Police at (252) 726-2523 if you see a nesting or hatching turtle or if you see anyone disturbing a marked turtle nest area