Loggerhead Sea Turtles nest on the beaches of Hilton Head Island between May and August. An adult female will nest every two to four years, coming ashore between 4 and 6 times per season to lay eggs. Loggerheads typically nest at night, crawling to a dry part of the beach where females will dig a nest cavity with their rear flippers and deposit an average of 120 eggs. Once the eggs have been laid, the female throws sand to disguise the nest from predators and slowly returns to the ocean.
After about 60 days of incubation, the small turtles within the eggs begin to hatch. During the cool night, the 2 inch long hatchlings emerge from the nest, orient themselves towards the brightest horizon, and crawl towards the ocean. Once in the water, hatchlings swim many miles offshore where they will spend the next 25-30 years of their life growing to adulthood.
The Hilton Head Island Sea Turtle Protection Project monitors sea turtle nesting and hatching activity on Hilton Head Island from May to October. You can adopt a nest a help provide the Coastal Discovery Museum’s Sea Turtle Protection Project with important funds to help support the educational portion of the project and the sea turtle exhibit at the museum. By educating others to the plight of sea turtles, their chances of survival may increase.
For $25.00, adoptive “parents” will receive a Certificate of Adoption, a turtle souvenir, and email updates, pictures on
nest progress and final report. For $50.00, adoptive “parents” will also receive a museum turtle T-shirt.