From Sara Johnson (DI Team Leader) 8/15/2017:
J-5 snuck one past us, and hatched out last night! This nest was only at day 50, and just entering into our monitoring window. Patrol yesterday morning revealed several large crab holes around the nest, but no depression or other activity. Increased crab activity can mean that things are happening in the nest, but it’s never a definite. Volunteers heard very faint sounds yesterday morning, so we assumed the nest was getting ready, and we were a couple of days from hatching. I had every intention of this email this morning asking to start lining up nest sitters and monitoring. The turtles had other plans! Luckily, one of our volunteers likes to go out at night and check on nests, and was present when the nest exploded! 60 very disortiented hatchlings were recovered and released to the water. […clip…]
Post-hatch nest assessment and excavation will take place Thursday at 5 pm. We encourage as many volunteers as possible to come out for these, since it gives a lot of great insight into the nesting and hatching process, and is sometimes an opportunity to find a straggler or two (or in J-4’s case, 22!).
Team Leader, Dauphin Island