Sea Turtles

Flashlights keeping sea turtles away

Flashlights keeping sea turtles away

Walk over the boardwalks of Navarre Beach last week and the scene resembles Christmas Eve, with waves of flickering lights. After sundown, hundreds of visitors took to the shoreline with flashlights, head lamps and cellphones to light their way. While strolling moonlit beaches is part of vacationing, the bright lights pose a risk to wildlife, […]

Nest count dismays turtle protectors

Nest count dismays turtle protectors

Navarre Beach has had seven loggerhead sea turtle nests since the season started in May, said Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center founder Cathy Holmes. The season is off to a wobbly start but is an improvement over last year, when nesting numbers hit an all-time low.   Read the full article in the July […]

Rare Kemp’s ridley sea turtle rescued off pier

Rare Kemp’s ridley sea turtle rescued off pier

An endangered sea turtle hooked April 13 on Navarre Beach Fishing Pier is set to make a full recovery. This was the first rescue of the upcoming sea turtle nesting season, which officially starts May 1. Read the full article in the April 25 issue of Navarre Press. Visit https://navarrepress.com/subscribe/ to view subscription options – […]

Turtle center getting new vehicle to aid conservation

Turtle center getting new vehicle to aid conservation

National conservation organization Turtleman Foundation has awarded a $6,500 grant to the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center (NBSTCC) to purchase a new all-terrain vehicle. The center will use the UTV (utility task vehicle) in its conservation efforts for sea turtle nesting surveys, sea turtle strandings, research and education, said Animal Care Team member Alex […]

Daughter’s legacy continues through turtle center

Daughter’s legacy continues through turtle center

Growing up on Cape Cod, it was no surprise that Shanna Litterst loved the ocean – as well as its inhabitants. In 2007, the 21-year-old biology major was interning at a fish hatchery on the Cape – her ultimate goal was to become a marine biologist. But six weeks before she graduated college, Shanna was […]

Tempers flare during tourism meeting

Tempers flare during tourism meeting

Frustrations ignited over Commissioner Rob Williamson’s suspension of county funding for the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center at the July 8 south end tourist development committee (SETDC) meeting. At one point Santa Rosa County Tourist Development Director Julie Morgan stood up and threatened to walk out following comments made by attendee T.J. Goulet, a […]

Turtle center funding expected to resume in July

Turtle center funding expected to resume in July

Following Commissioner Rob Williamson’s surprise move to suspend county funding for the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center, its representatives had their say at Monday morning’s commission meeting. During the public forum Navarre resident Yvonne Harper suggested Williamson’s actions may have led some to wrongly infer there had been a misappropriation of funds. Harper questioned […]

Holmes offers tips for sea turtle encounters

Holmes offers tips for sea turtle encounters

Sea turtles are currently in their nesting season, but their efforts to lay eggs can be easily disturbed by people eager to catch a glimpse of them. “Seeing a sea turtle is an amazing experience for residents and visitors, but a lot of activity and noise around it can make it feel enclosed and deter […]

Williamson suspends turtle center funding

Williamson suspends turtle center funding

Santa Rosa District 4 Commissioner Rob Williamson isn’t satisfied that the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center has answered all his questions related to county fund expenditures, so he moved June 11 to suspend further payments to the organization. Cinnamon Holderman, president of organization, said she was “blind sided” by Williamson’s move, stating he has never asked her […]

Mauro receives presidential award

Mauro receives presidential award

Navarre High School science teacher Charlene Mauro was at the White House Aug. 12 to accept the Presidential Innovation Award for Environmental Educator. Mauro, Project Director for the Navarre Beach Marine Science Station, joined 16 other teachers and 60 students from across the country who were recognized for their contributions to environmental education and stewardship. Read more in […]

Turtles hooked, saved at pier

Turtles hooked, saved at pier

Folks on the Navarre Beach Fishing Pier (NBFP) jumped into action Aug. 12 as two sea turtle were rescued after being accidentally hooked. Snappy, the larger of the two turtles at 15 inches and 12.5 pounds, was snagged and swallowed a fishing hook. As soon as fishing pier staff got word, the Responsible Pier Initiative […]

It’s that time of the year … baby turtles are here

It’s that time of the year … baby turtles are here

Sea turtles have been busy making nests along the Emerald Coast, and according to a Gulf Islands National Seashore (GINS) biologist, 143 baby sea turtles found their way to the Gulf from Pensacola Beach Thursday night. The first baby turtles had hatched July 29 from a nest at Perdido Key. GINS Assistant Superintendent Steve McCoy said 32 […]

Campers focus on fins, flippers

Campers focus on fins, flippers

Even as summer winds down, Navarre Beach Marine Station (NBMSS) summer camps are still in full swing. Kindergartners through second graders last week attended Fins and Flippers. The camp could be described as an introduction to NBMSS. “We talk about turtles and dolphins and sea otters,” said camp leader Emily Simon, referring to the mammals that […]

Nearly 70 volunteers clean the beach

Nearly 70 volunteers clean the beach

Plastic bags. Bottles. Cups. Straws. Cans. Fishing line. Just some of the items collected by nearly 70 volunteers Saturday as part of the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center’s monthly “Trash Bash.” In all, volunteers removed more than 215 pounds of trash from Navarre Beach in just more than two hours.  

Red tide causes fish kill in northeast Gulf

Red tide causes fish kill in northeast Gulf

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has confirmed a large-scale offshore fish kill in the northeast Gulf of Mexico. Citizens have reported observations of thousands of dead and dying bottom-dwelling reef fish, as well as sea turtles and crabs, to the FWC’s Fish Kill Hotline. Satellite images revealed an extensive surface bloom of Florida’s […]

Grant to link students and turtles

Grant to link students and turtles

A grant award for Gulf Islands National Seashore (GINS) will fund an innovative educational opportunity, so that local teens can better understand a special group of seasonal guests on area beaches, sea turtles. The grant from the National Parks Foundation will fund Gulf Islands’ “Turtle T.H.I.S. (Teens Helping in the Seashore) Program.” “We are excited to […]

Turtle nest, beach chairs and pavilion vandalized

Turtle nest, beach chairs and pavilion vandalized

At some point between 10 p.m. July 22 and 4:50 a.m. July 23, vandals damaged a sea turtle nest located west of the Navarre Beach Fishing Pier. The vandals also knifed through eight lounge chair cushions from V.I.P. Beach Services and at least one privately owned beach chair was damaged. Vandals also painted graffiti inside […]

Loggerhead turtle returns to Gulf

Loggerhead turtle returns to Gulf

A juvenile loggerhead sea turtle was returned to the Gulf of Mexico July 9 after several months of rehabilitation at the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park in Fort Walton Beach. The turtle, named Captain Hook by volunteers, weighed only two pounds and suffered with mobility problems when discovered on Okaloosa Island. Read more in the July 17 issue […]

Juvenile green turtle swims at the Gulf-side Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary

Juvenile green turtle swims at the Gulf-side Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary

If you have not had a chance to visit local reefs lately, check out this video showing marine life swimming nearby including a juvenile green sea turtle. The video was taken at the Gulf-side Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary artificial reef Saturday, July 5, 2014. YouTube    

Volunteers clean the beach

Volunteers clean the beach

Navarre Beach was packed with tourists and local residents July 4. Unfortunately, not everything that went to the beach Friday made it home or in to a trash receptacle. The Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center scheduled a special trash bash July 5 expecting the beach would need some special attention after the holiday. They […]

Update: Bay scallop season open in Gulf

Update: Bay scallop season open in Gulf

The recreational bay scallop season opened in some Gulf of Mexico state waters (shore to 9 nautical miles) June 28, three days earlier than the season was slated to start. The portion of Gulf state waters is from the Pasco-Hernando county line north and west to the west bank of the Mexico Beach Canal in Bay […]

Update: 4th turtle nest found

Update: 4th turtle nest found

From May 1 to June 19, Navarre Beach had no “turtle action.” But since then, four loggerhead turtle nests have been discovered in various locations along the beach. Volunteers remind beachgoers to stay clear of the nests, which are clearly marked. Additionally, at the end of your beach visit, please remove any items that you […]

Students ‘Turn the Tides’ at summer camp

Students ‘Turn the Tides’ at summer camp

Not many summer camps include squid, ice cream and kayaking at the beach all in one week. But those are just a few of the activities young campers were able to enjoy during the Navarre Beach Marine Science Station’s Turning the Tides summer camp June 9 – 13. Students from kindergarten to fifth grade participated […]

Coalition discusses future of Navarre Beach

Coalition discusses future of Navarre Beach

“Everybody’s got their project, but what’s the synergy? How do we collectively do a lot of great things with the limited amount of resources we have?” asked Bob Boston, who works on behalf of the Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary Committee. Boston joined other community members June 3 who met as part of the Navarre Beach […]

Navarre Beach reefs growing

Navarre Beach reefs growing

The near shore artificial reefs off Navarre Beach in the Gulf of Mexico are growing. According to Mike Sandler, a member of the Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary committee, the growth is attributed to increased sand levels as well as new marine life. “We had more sand deposited out here, which is a natural thing. The […]

NBSTCC breaks ground on pools

NBSTCC breaks ground on pools

The Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center broke ground Tuesday on its new viewing pool, to be located in front of the center’s building. Bulldozers were clearing the area of cement and excess sand so that Aqua Pool & Patio, a pool installation and maintenance company from Fort Walton Beach, could begin construction on the 4 […]

Turtle time on Navarre Beach

Turtle time on Navarre Beach

May marks the start of sea turtle nesting season along Florida’s Gulf Coast and local sea turtle enthusiasts are working to remind residents and visitors how they can help the process along. Volunteers from the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center (NBSTCC) spent Friday and Saturday at Fun Fest selling merchandise to help fund the […]

Sea Turtle Center closes for improvements

Sea Turtle Center closes for improvements

The Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center (NBSTCC) closed its doors Saturday in preparation for construction of a new pool and observation deck and improvements to the interpretative portion of the center. Volunteers completed inventory and locked the doors shortly after 2 p.m. “We expect construction will begin within the next two weeks on the […]

Cold Stunning Affects Nearby Sea Turtles

Cold Stunning Affects Nearby Sea Turtles

Several area sea turtles were rescued recently as a result of the below-freezing temperatures the area has been experiencing. A condition known as “cold stunning” occurs when they are exposed to prolonged cold water temperatures. Last Tuesday, the water warmed up enough to allow Gulf Islands National Seashore to release five green sea turtles into the […]