Turtle nesting nearly done
Only three sea turtle nests remain incubating in the sand on Anna Maria Island as turtle season winds down to its Oct. 31 close.
One in Holmes Beach is due to hatch on Oct. 10 (Oct. 25 at the latest), one in Anna Maria is due to hatch on Oct. 25 (Nov. 9 at the latest) and a rare green turtle nest in Anna Maria is due to hatch on Nov. 9 (Nov. 24 at the latest), according to Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring.
Sea turtles set a new record on the Island this year, laying 362 nests, beating their previous record of 244 nests in 1999 and the 15-year average of 155.
An unknown number of the nests were destroyed in late June 2012 by Tropical Storm Debby; since then, turtles laid 183 nests, still above the 15-year average.