Record sea turtle nests likely in S.C.'s Hilton Head

Beaufort GazetteJuly 1, 2011 

With more than a month remaining in sea-turtle nesting season, reports of loggerhead nests are on pace to break records for some areas of Beaufort County.

And already, leatherback turtle nests have been documented on Hilton Head Island for the first time.

The largest sea turtles, endangered leatherbacks, reach lengths of more than 6 feet and weigh as much as 2,000 pounds.

Some of the tracks left by the leatherbacks' crawl were wider than volunteers are tall, according to Amy Tressler of the Coastal Discovery Museum, who manages Hilton Head's Sea Turtle Protection Program.

Leatherback eggs are the size of racquetballs, far larger than the golf ball-sized eggs of loggerheads, the area's most common sea turtle.

"The leatherback is a huge highlight to the season over here," Tressler said.

Read the complete story at islandpacket.com

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