Hatching of about 100 loggerhead sea turtles was captured via a live-streaming, high-definition camera on Friday. The webcam has been mounted on a beach in the Florida Keys, focused on the nest for about two weeks. Friday evening under dim moonlight, the webcam captured the 3-inch baby turtles come out of the nest and head to the Atlantic Ocean.
Loggerhead sea turtles are considered threatened and endangered
The camera used only the infrared light to avoid disturbing the hatchlings or confusing them with artificial light. Harry Appel, President of the Florida Keys-based Save-a-Turtle organization, said that it’s the first time a webcam has been used to record a turtle hatch. And the infrared light was important because it doesn’t disturb any of the natural activities of turtles trying to find the ambient light of the moon.
This special webcam video is part of the Florida Keys’ efforts to raise awareness of sea turtles among people and the need to protect them. The effort was funded by the Florida Keys Tourism Council. Both the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service had approved the webcam. Loggerhead turtles have been around for millions of years. But now this species is considered endangered and threatened.
Female loggerhead sea turtles visit beaches between April and October to lay eggs
Florida Keys is the habitat of many sea turtle species. Loggerhead, leatherback, green, Kemp’s ridley, and hawksbill sea turtles nest on beaches in the Florida Keys. Loggerhead turtles are found in Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean and in the Mediterranean Sea. They spend most of their time in salt water. The females only come to the land for a brief period to lay eggs.
Human intervention and the loggerhead turtles’ reproduction rate are the key reasons in the decline of the species. Once the female loggerhead turtle has laid eggs, she doesn’t produce eggs for at least 2-3 years. The female turtles crawl to the beaches in Florida between April and October each year to lay about 100 eggs. They come to the beaches during the night, lay eggs, cover them with sand and go back to the salt waters.