It has been a banner year for loggerheads nesting on Sanibel and Captiva! As of August 4, the nest numbers for the East and West End of Sanibel were 164 and 430, respectively. The previous records for these beaches were 120 and 376 (both set in 2015).
184 nests have been laid on Captiva to date, also breaking their previous record of 179 nests laid in 2000.
With 722 total loggerhead nests on the two islands combined, and scattered nesting continuing into August, 2016 has shattered the all-time record of 622 nests for the two islands combined!
While we’re breaking records on Sanibel and Captiva, the Statewide numbers won’t be totalled until the end of the season in October.
At least for the SCCF Sea Turtle Program, these numbers show that decades of coordinated conservation efforts are starting to pay off, including nest protection, reducing fisheries interactions, and limiting artificial lighting in coastal communities.
Here are the nest counts as of August 4, 2016:
|Sanibel East||Sanibel West||Captiva||Total|
|Loggerhead False Crawls||332||803||283||1418|