Walking with the Alligators

Walking with the Alligators
A Florida Alligator

May 10, 2015

Lovely Leatherback~

A Nesting Florida Leatherback Sea Turtle
Dermochelys coriacea
Photo credit: NOAA – Public Domain

For those fortunate ones of us who live here in the tropical paradise known as Florida, the news this morning brought a rare and treasured site and story, it was of a Leatherback Sea Turtle who had been recently seen on the beach at Canaveral National Sea Shore, laying her eggs.
According to reporter Dan Billow, who has covered the Florida Space Coast for over 25 years for WESH TV, this was a once in a lifetime occurrence.
What made it so,  was the fact that the lovely Leatherback weighing in at over 800 pounds, was doing her nesting and egg laying in broad daylight, something that rarely ever happens.
The Leatherback is the largest of our Florida Sea Turtles and this was a blessing for those of us here, who love them and do everything possible to ensure their safety during nesting season, which hopefully will also guarantee their future.
The Leatherback is one of three Florida Sea Turtles who are listed as Endangered, the List also includes the Green and Hawksbill Sea Turtles.
The story today about this Sea Turtle mother makes what we saw happen in our own front yard yesterday even sweeter.
Harriet our resident Gopher Tortoise, was next to her primary hole/tunnel, at about noon, quite busy sending sand flying, it appeared that she then made a small mound or nest and looked to be laying her own eggs.
We both found this news interesting, as we did not know that Sea Turtles and Gopher Tortoises did their nesting at the same time.
We may be grandparents again soon and we are, as to be expected, both thrilled.
The representative from the Park Service and the TV News reporter both agree that things may finally be looking up for this gentle giant.
Congratulations and Happy Mother’s Day to a Lovely Leatherback~

Places to learn more:
Rare 800-pound sea turtle nests on Brevard County beach
800 Pound Leatherback Sea Turtle Lays Eggs
Canaveral National Sea Shore
Loggerhead Nesting In Florida
Endangered or Threatened Species
Leatherback Turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) – NOAA
Leatherback sea turtle – Wikipedia
Leatherback Sea Turtle – Gator – Woman.com

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