Counting and recording data on sea turtles on St. George Island
After a nest hatches, we wait 3 days and then dig up the nest to evaluate it, and record the data on how many eggs were in the nest - hatched or unhatched.
The unhatched eggs that are left after 3 days are not going to hatch - they are typically unfertilized eggs, or ones that did not develop to maturity for some reason.
We count the eggshells left, as well as the unhatched eggs, and record them on the forms at right. I group the hatched eggshells in groups of 5 to make counting easier.
So far on St. George Island, I've evaluated 2 nests, with a total of 219 hatched eggs, 15 unhatched, and two live babies who did not make it out of the nest for some reason.
The two babies are currently at my house in a dark cool place, resting, and I will release them on a dark beach tonight, when their chances for survival are the best.
This work with sea turtles is all permitted by the State of Florida, and I am trained to do this work with the sea turtles. It is fascinating, and I am a lucky dog.