TOPSAIL HILL PRESERVE STATE PARK HAS ITS FIRST SEA TURTLE NEST OF THE SEASON
SANTA ROSA BEACH, FL – Topsail Hill Preserve State Park had its first sea turtle nest of the season. During nesting season (May 1 – Oct 31) sea turtle nest monitoring is conducted every morning at the park. This past weekend, an adult female Kemp’s Ridley, which is extremely endangered, was observed nesting in the dunes of the park. Along with the Kemp’s Ridley there are three other of species of sea turtles that nest in the area – Loggerhead, Green and Leatherback.
Because of this connection between the threatened and endangered sea turtles and our shoreline, it is important that everyone does their part to help keep the beach safe for sea turtles. There are three simple things you can do and that is to keep the beach #CleanDarkFlat. Clean – remove all your belongings and trash as you leave the beach each day. Dark – If you are on or near the beach at night please turn off all the lights and close the blinds and curtains of any windows facing the beach. Sea turtles are naturally attracted to light and artificial lighting can disturb them during nesting as well as distract from making it safely to the Gulf. If you must use a light on the beach, use a red emitting light that is turtle friendly as those are less distracting. Flat – fill in your holes and knock down your sandcastles before leaving the beach each day. Sea turtles need a flat beach to make it safely on to the beach and in to the Gulf from the nest.
Also, if you find a dead, sick, or injured sea turtle, or to report someone disturbing a sea turtle or nest, call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) at 1-888-404-3922. Of course if you’re inside a Florida State Park you can also contact the park’s Ranger Station.
Topsail Hill Preserve State Park has over 1600 acres, ten plus miles of hiking and biking trails, 3.2 miles of beach, three coastal dune lakes and is home to a variety of wildlife such as alligators, bears, long leaf pine trees, carnivorous plants and shore birds just to name a few.
To learn more about the park, please visit: https://www.floridastateparks.org/park/Topsail-Hill
For more information about the Friends of Topsail Hill Preserve State Park, please visit:
www.topsailparkfriends.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on Florida’s award-winning state parks, visit www.FloridaStateParks.org.