First Time in a LONG Time: Rare Sea Turtle Lays Eggs on Texas Beach
“This has never happened in modern times,” said Dr. Pamela Plotkin, director of Texas Sea Grant and sea turtle biologist.
But now it has. Down in South Texas on Magnolia Beach, which is close to Port Lavaca down along Texas' southern coastline, the rarest sea turtle in existence, the Kemp's ridley sea turtle, has laid eggs, which have subsequently hatched, right here in the Lone Star State.
Dr. Plotkin was speaking with the Texas A&M College of Geosciences. She went on to say:
“Sea turtles typically nest on barrier island beaches in Texas and so seeing a turtle nest on a beach inside any bay is rare. There are many miles of unpopulated bay shoreline along Texas’ coast, so it is possible that sea turtle nesting on these shores is more frequent and undetected.”
In a world where so many of the headlines mention what sounds like the inevitable decline and near-extinction of some (many) of the animal species on this planet, learning that things like this are still happening is encouraging to many of us.
FOX 29 out of San Antonio, Texas reported that "Plotkin told CNN that Kemp's ridley sea turtles 'were once very abundant, and because they were overharvested and caught accidentally in fisheries for many years, they became critically endangered.'
Thankfully though, over the course of the last four decades, we've started to see an increase in the population. Much of the credit for that should be given to the conservationists who work so hard to protect the sea turtles. They may do this by protecting their nests or reducing the "accidental deaths caused by fishing nets."
Even more serendipitous is the fact the hatchings took place during Sea Turtle Week, which is acknowledged from June 8 thru the 16th.