Sea Turtle Patrol Team
Stating May 1 through Oct. 31, staff and volunteers conduct daily surveys along county-owned beaches on Pensacola Beach and Perdido Key. Volunteers patrol the beaches at first light, marking any nesting or hatching activity.
Daily surveys ensure any nests laid in the night are protected and marked, allowing normal beach activities to continue. During the morning surveys, the location and species for each nest is identified and recorded. A secure marking device is placed at all nest sites, and a clearly marked buffer prevents foot traffic around the nest. False crawls, where a female crawls ashore but fails to dig a nest, are also recorded.
Volunteers and staff continue to check on nests during the incubation period, ensuring they remain undisturbed. When a nest's hatching time is near, volunteers will check the nest daily for signs of a hatching event. Post-hatching, staff will conduct a nest assessment to determine total number of hatched and unhatched eggs.
Volunteers and staff remain on standby throughout the year to assist with disorientation, stranding and accidental hooking events.