Georgia sea turtles reach nesting record

A loggerhead sea turtle hatchling crawls across the beach at Blackbeard Island National Wildlife Refuge. Credit: Peter Pattavina/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Georgia is seeing a record number of nesting loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta). Biologists have counted more than 3,960 nests along the coast since May. That’s 10 more than the previous record set in 2019, the Associated Press reports, and the numbers are expected to continue to grow through August. While the numbers are encouraging, the federally threatened turtles remain at risk. “Based on current trends, we predict it will take at least another 20 years before we reach our recovery goals,” state wildlife biologist Mark Dodd, who oversees Georgia’s sea turtle recovery plan, said in a news release. Dodd credits the rising numbers to increased monitoring and protection by states with nesting sea turtles and shrimp boats using turtle-friendly nets.

Read more from the Associated Press.