Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Fay Leaves Most Turtle Nests Intact; Only 8 Percent of Loggerhead Nests Were Lost to the Storm

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Fay Leaves Most Turtle Nests Intact; Only 8 Percent of Loggerhead Nests Were Lost to the Storm

Article excerpt

Byline: TERESA STEPZINSKI

BRUNSWICK -- Tropical Storm Fay destroyed fewer loggerhead sea turtle nests on Georgia beaches than originally feared, state wildlife biologists said Monday.

About 8 percent of the state's nests were lost, according to preliminary assessments. Georgia Department of Natural Resources biologists and sea turtle patrol volunteers conducted the weekend surveys on all the beaches except Blackbeard Island.

"We lost about 106 nests ... Luckily, it wasn't as bad as we had expected, but we still don't know the long-term effect," said Mark Dodd, the DNR's sea turtle program coordinator.

Blackbeard Island's beach couldn't be checked because of the rough weather, he said.

Nonetheless, it will still be a record year for Georgia loggerheads, Dodd said.

"We had a total of 1,634 nests as of today [Monday], and by the end of the season we might finish out with 1,650," Dodd said.

The previous state record was 1,504 nests in 2003. …

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