cathy holmes

Turtle monitors report mixed results

Turtle monitors report mixed results

Digging up the nest of an endangered sea turtle is illegal, with the risk of up to $125,000 in fines and even federal prison time. But that is exactly what Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Patrollers were doing the evening of Aug. 20. It’s OK for them. They have a permit and a job to do: […]

Sea turtle center expanding

Sea turtle center expanding

Construction got underway last week for the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center’s latest addition. The nonprofit conservation and environmental education center is in the process of adding an outdoor exhibit area at the eastern corner of the facility.   Read the full article in the Aug. 8 issue of Navarre Press. Visit navarrepress.com/subscribe to […]

Turtle heroes pull “Mac” from the surf

Turtle heroes pull “Mac” from the surf

Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center named four new Sea Turtle Heroes July 20 thanks to the rescue effort that likely saved the life of a loggerhead sea turtle along Navarre Beach. Kevin Wiethe said he and some friends were setting up their canopy on the beach for the day when they spotted something in […]

One nest added, two more lost

One nest added, two more lost

Despite continued impacts from people, Navarre Beach has added another sea turtle nest to its count after a loggerhead made the trek up the beach July 16. That brings this year’s total so far to eight.     Read the full article in the July 25 issue of Navarre Press. Visit navarrepress.com/subscribe to view subscription […]

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 – […]

Pier receives turtle-friendly light grant

Pier receives turtle-friendly light grant

The Navarre Beach Fishing Pier has received a grant to install new and updated turtle-friendly lighting along the pier, in the store, in the restaurant, at volleyball courts and possibly in parking areas. The grant is awarded through the Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. Read the full article in […]

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 […]

Sweet Pea celebrates first anniversary with NBSTCC

Sweet Pea celebrates first anniversary with NBSTCC

In 2018, the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center (NBSTCC) made an impact on roughly 50,000 people from around the world, and a big part of that outreach has been done by one disabled juvenile green sea turtle named Sweet Pea. Cathy Holmes said that’s a pretty great accomplishment for her first year of work. […]

Sea Turtle Soiree raises $21,000 for conservation

Sea Turtle Soiree raises $21,000 for conservation

Roughly 130 people danced the night away Saturday at the Pensacola Beach Hilton at the first-ever, sold-out Sea Turtle Soiree in support of sea turtle conservation. The event was one of the largest fundraisers to date for the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center (NBSTCC), and it raked in thousands for the nonprofit’s marine conservation, […]

Sweet Pea goes on a diet

Sweet Pea goes on a diet

Sweet Pea is on a diet of sorts. The Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center’s resident green sea turtle is still receiving medical care at Gulf World Marine Institute in Panama City for chronic gastrointestinal concerns.   Read the full article in the Sept. 13 issue of Navarre Press. Visit www.navarrepress.com/subscribe to view subscription options. Sign up to […]

National turtle researchers come to Navarre Beach reef

National turtle researchers come to Navarre Beach reef

Lei Lei is much like any other loggerhead sea turtle. She cruises the waters of the Gulf of Mexico just off the coast of Navarre Beach, munching on shellfish. But there is something unusual about Lei Lei. Read the full article in the Sept. 6 issue of Navarre Press. Visit www.navarrepress.com/subscribe to view subscription options. […]

Nest numbers down, beach items may be to blame

Nest numbers down, beach items may be to blame

Since sea turtle nesting season began May 1, Navarre Beach has only seen three turtle nests, a far cry from the nearly record-breaking 19 nests that were found last year. The nesting number is also lower than the average for the past decade. Read the full article in the Aug. 2 issue of Navarre Press. Click […]

Sweet Pea travels for treatment at Gulf World

Sweet Pea travels for treatment at Gulf World

The Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center’s (NBSTCC) resident green sea turtle, Sweet Pea, has been transported to Gulf World in Panama City for treatment of gastro-intestinal issues. NBSTCC founder Cathy Holmes said the turtle was moved July 17 to Gulf World Marine Park because staffers at the center observed that a pre-existing, chronic condition […]

Local develops new turtle-saving device

Local develops new turtle-saving device

Up until this month, when a sea turtle larger than two feet wide got hooked off the Navarre Beach Fishing Pier, there was virtually no way to safely rescue the animal. Cathy Holmes, Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Patrol member and founder of the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center (NBSTCC), explained that rescuers were limited […]

Pier progress praised

Pier progress praised

It has been roughly six months since the previous operators of “the longest pier in the Gulf of Mexico” walked out early on their contract with Santa Rosa County, leaving the 2017 bid winner, Growing Santa Rosa Enterprises (GSRE), to jump in early. In those first few weeks, the operators faced quite a few challenges […]

Sea turtle nesting season gets underway

Sea turtle nesting season gets underway

Sea turtle nesting season on Navarre Beach began this month, with the first mother turtles expected to arrive by the start of June. Turtle Patroller Cathy Holmes said there are some easy ways for beachgoers to help protect the threatened and endangered species that make their way onto the beach each year to lay eggs. […]

Seas the Day sees crowds

Seas the Day sees crowds

  April is a busy month. Beyond the Easter holiday, April is National Autism Awareness Month. It is the Month of the Military Child, and it is also National Child Abuse Prevention Month.             Read the full article in the April 5 issue of Navarre Press. Visit www.navarrepress.com/subscribe to view […]

Reptiles drawn back to pier despite multiple run-ins with fishing hooks

Reptiles drawn back to pier despite multiple run-ins with fishing hooks

Okra, a juvenile green sea turtle, has had a rough year. After sustaining serious head trauma that exposed part of her skull, Okra ended up on the end of a fisherman’s line on the Navarre Beach Fishing Pier. The hook was caught in her right shoulder. Fortunately, she was rescued and sent to the Gulfarium […]

Sea Turtle Extravaganza promotes conservation

Sea Turtle Extravaganza promotes conservation

Arriving at Navarre Beach Saturday morning, visitors were greeted by a flying 50-foot alligator, a 75-foot-long octopus with swooping tentacles and several other flying sea creatures. These larger-than-life critter kites were part of the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center’s (NBSTCC) annual Sea Turtle Extravaganza. Center director Christy Meyer said she was thankful to the […]

Turtle hatching season nears record success

Turtle hatching season nears record success

Despite less than perfect odds, Navarre Beach is having a nearly record-setting sea turtle nesting and hatching season as hundreds of hatchlings have escaped to the Gulf of Mexico. There have been 19 sea turtle nests on Navarre Beach this year. The record is 20, said turtle patroller Cinnamon Holderman. Two of those nests were […]

Storm damages sea turtle nests on Navarre Beach

Storm damages sea turtle nests on Navarre Beach

Tropical Storm Cindy may have claimed quite a few victims along Navarre Beach as the storm surge washed wave after wave over the area’s sea turtle nests. Cathy Holmes of the Sea Turtle Patrol said her organization has been getting some really bad news. “We have seven nests that were totally underwater for 48 to […]

Giving sea turtles more tomorrows one bucket at a time

Giving sea turtles more tomorrows one bucket at a time

Visitors need not pay for plastic children’s toys to build their sand castles on Navarre Beach. A new Borrow Bin was created at the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center June 14 to allow visitors to recycle, rather than buy, these toys. Plastics are one of the leading pollutants cleaned up from the beach, and […]

First recorded leatherback nest on Navarre Beach

First recorded leatherback nest on Navarre Beach

Turtle Patrollers were in for a big surprise early Saturday morning. The first sea turtle of Navarre’s nesting season has laid her eggs this Mother’s Day weekend, and this new momma made another first. She is the first leatherback sea turtle in recorded history to nest on Navarre Beach. Director of the Navarre Beach Sea […]

Sea turtle nesting season is here

Sea turtle nesting season is here

Monday marked the start of a special time on Navarre Beach. Sea turtle nesting season has begun and will continue through October. There are four species of endangered and threatened sea turtles that come to Navarre Beach to lay their eggs. Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center Director Cathy Holmes said this is an exciting […]

‘Flip-Flops and Teaching Spots’ draws hundreds of applicants

‘Flip-Flops and Teaching Spots’ draws hundreds of applicants

Santa Rosa County’s first teacher recruitment event drew more than 480 potential candidates and garnered even more on a waiting list to fill openings in Santa Rosa schools. Read the full article in the March 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

Eagle Scout builds exam table to assist turtle center

Eagle Scout builds exam table to assist turtle center

Throughout the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center (NBSTCC), there is project after project made possible by a volunteer. From the paintings on the walls to the educational displays, much of what is in the center was donated, and many of those projects were completed by local scouts as their Eagle Scout project. Read the […]

Retrofit grant brings turtle-friendly lighting to beachfront properties

Retrofit grant brings turtle-friendly lighting to beachfront properties

The Board of County Commissioners voted Thursday to extend the Sea Turtle Lighting Retrofit project by six months to July 17 to allow for more of Navarre Beach’s condominiums and public lighting to be switched to turtle friendly versions. Read the full article in the Dec. 15 issue of Navarre Press. Click here to subscribe […]

Navarre’s sea turtle nests are hatching out

Navarre’s sea turtle nests are hatching out

For Navarre Beach’s Sea Turtle Patrol the coming weeks are an exciting time as nest after nest of sea turtle eggs hatches. Three of Navarre Beach’s five loggerhead sea turtle nests have hatched releasing hundreds of tiny hatchlings into the vast Gulf of Mexico, and the next nest is expected to hatch sometime this week. […]