Turtle Patrol Report – Week Ending May 25

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We now have 21 nests in May. This is a new record for the month. The previous highs were 20 in 2017 and 19 in 2015 when we had 70 and 75 nests. Looks like a busy year!

Turtle Patrol mama on beach doane May 20 2019

May 20, 2019
Nests 8 and 9!
It was a great morning on the beach. Joleen Ardaiolo, Bev Stribling, and Nancy and Joel Pondelik’s long walk was rewarded with a crawl near the old pier at Camp St Christopher. Valerie and Mark Doane responded and found Nest 9. It was left in situ.

Turtle Patrol nest 8 May 2019

Catherine Scully, Sue Thomas, Gary Holtz, Rob Jerome and Mike Vinson had the real treat of the morning. As they got between Boardwalks 2 and 3, they noticed an in crawl but no corresponding out crawl. The Zone 3 walkers along with other people walking on the beach were able to watch a mother turtle finish laying her eggs and return to the water. Judy Morr called out Bill Nelson who found the nest where the earlier observers said it would be and the team went to work. Rob Jerome found the top egg in the nest only a couple of inches from the surface and the team (Mike Vinson, Gary Holtz, Sue Thomas, Rob Jerome and Catherine Scully along with Rob’s sister Ruth) went to work moving the 141 eggs to an area about 40 yards below Boardwalk 4.

May 21, 2019
Nests 10 and 11!
The morning started with a promising call from Walkers Pat & Val Luzadder, Christine Dudzik & Tom Lamb. There was a crawl right up the access road to Camp St. Christopher. This time the mama dug right in the center of the road. Terry Fansler, Jane Magioncalda, Mike Vincent and Bill Greubel investigated and Bill found the nest on his first probe! Nest 10 contained 118 eggs; 117 were relocated to a new site 50 yards north of the vehicle entrance.

Walkers Ruby Jenkins, Lori Porwoll, Pam Salvestrini, Francie Segal & Lynda Zegers called in a crawl about 125 yards north of Boardwalk 1. In a few more minutes they called in another crawl 20 yards north of the first dog sign. When the probers arrived, they decided the first was a false crawl and the second turned out to be Nest 11. The nest was left in situ.

May 22, 2019
Nest 12!

Turtle Patrol nest 12 May 2019

Walkers; Paula Baram, Heather Fife, Charlane Faught and Brad Masteller reported a crawl near the second house under construction north of the Pelican’s Nest. Bill and Linda Nelson probed and found nest 12 with 123 eggs. Two of the eggs right at the top were broken by crabs which had dug a hole to explore this brand new nest. 121 were relocated to higher ground about 100 feet away.

Walkers, Lesley and Tony Gore, Carol Lovejoy, Bill and Susan Miller called about 2 crawls. One was near the vehicle entrance at Camp St. Christopher, the other about 200 yards down the beach. Terry Fansler, Jane Magioncalda and Mike Vincent probed. Terry said both areas look like Swiss Cheese; but no eggs were found at either crawl. They speculate that the wrack in both areas could have deterred the mamas.

Jim and Jo Eisenhouer and Kathy Hanson called in with a crawl between Boardwalks 4 and 5. Bill and Linda Nelson responded but as was their first impression, this was a false crawl that never went above the high tide line.

May 23, 2019
Nests 13, 14, 15 and 16!
Wow! A busy morning as nests 13, 14, 15 and 16 were found along with some false crawls.

Turtle Patrol member Charlane Faught, who was out taking an early morning walk with friends, reported a crawl near Boardwalk 6. Bill and Eileen Middleton were called to probe and found Nest 13, which was moved to higher ground. Eileen Middleton dug the new nest for the 124 eggs with the help of Charlane and her friends.

Walkers Chris Palmer, his niece and Lucy Hoover located a crawl with distinct in and out tracks and a large body pit near the old Danger sign just beyond the Camp St. Christopher buildings. Bill Greubel was called to investigate and quickly found the nest. He determined that Nest 14 would not need to be relocated.

Turtle Patrol Nest 16 May 2019

Walkers: Terry Fansler; Callie and her father Mike Bobbaccio; Brenda Zach; Chris Czander; Gloria Reynolds & Anna Wechter turned the corner at the Club pool to the view of three new crawls. About 300 yards yards up the beach a crawl probed by Bill Nelson resulted in Nest 15 which was buttoned up by Linda Nelson and the Walker crew and left in situ. A little farther up the beach at the south property line of the yellow house the third crawl resulted in Nest 16. Bill Greubel came to help Bill Nelson and found the nest way up on the hill in the middle of an ants nest. Bill Greubel quickly extracted the eggs and exited to the water to eliminate the many ants attacking him. Bill Nelson, with the help of Brenda Zack, placed the eggs in a new nest about 10 yards towards the water and away from the ants. Callie Boccaccio (age 8) joined Brenda and, with the supervision of Terry Fansler, they finished placing the last 25 eggs in the new nest.

There were also 4 false crawls that were investigated. A busy morning and hopefully we will have more days like this! Thank you to all the Walkers, Probers and friends who helped.

May 24, 2019
Nests 17, 18, and 19!
Walkers Nancy Shenton, Tara Penny and Jackie Brooks called in just past 6:30 AM. There was a crawl coming in under the steps to Boardwalk 8; Bill Greubel investigated and declared it a false crawl. But he was not finished yet. Nest 17 was found 100 yards north of the second new house from the Pelican’s Nest. The eggs were left in situ. Then Nest 18 was found 100 yards South of Boardwalk 6. The 143 eggs were relocated nearby. Congratulations to Jackie; these are her first nests.

Walkers Sandy MacCoss, Alison Bowers, Martha Goldstein and J-Anna Smith had walked all the way to the spit when they found a crawl. There were 3 body pits and lots of tracks. Valerie and Mark Doane and Sandy probed and Sandy finally found the eggs. Nest 19 was relocated 20 yards south of the first dog sign. There were145 eggs.

May 25, 2019
Nests 20 and 21!

Turtle Patrol mama on beac May 25 2019

The first call this morning came in from Amanda Shilko ; she and the other Walkers found one way tracks into the dunes about 50 yards south of the flag at Camp St Christopher. They explored the area and found the lost mama. Terry Fansler, Sandy MacCoss and Jane Magioncalda were called to investigate. The group managed to get the mama safely into the water. There were body pits and tracks in the area; which were probed with no nest found. As the Walkers; the Shilkos, Kathleen Airhart & Brenda Zack, continued they found a crawl about 100 yards north of the old pier. Turtle Patrol nest 20 May 2019Sandy MacCoss probed and found nest 21. 83 eggs were relocated close by because the nest was in an area below the high tide line. This was Kathleen’s first nest. Congratulations!

Alexa Kinne called in with a crawl about 100 yards north of Boardwalk #6. Bill and Linda Nelson responded and found nest #20 and, with lots of help from Alexa, they relocated the nest back towards Boardwalk 6. This was Alexa’s first solo walk and first nest. Congratulations Alexa!

-Submitted by Gary Fansler