The U.S. Gulf Coast Is Seeing An Increase In Sea Turtle Populations

Our hearts go out to sea turtles. Not only are they amazing creatures, but they have also certainly dealt with their fair share of problems in recent years.

Some of those issues have resulted in a decline in their overall numbers.

It seems as if the news may be getting better, however, as the population of sea turtles is on the rise along the Gulf Coast of the United States.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

A beach crew at the Harrison County Sand Beach found turtle tracks when they were cleaning up. It was on the Gulf Coast in Mississippi, just east of the Pass Christian Harbor.

After making the discovery, the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport was notified. They were able to locate the nesting site and protect it with stakes and tape.

A loggerhead sea turtle is probably the turtle that laid the eggs, although it could be a Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle, the most endangered of all sea turtles according to the president of the Marine study group, Moby Solangi.


It has been since 2018 when the last sea turtle nest was found on mainland Mississippi.

The news is also good in Georgia, which has set a record for sea turtle nests. According to CNN, the Jekyll Island Authorities Georgia C-Terminal Center reported 3966 nests.

On Jekyll Island, 236 sea turtle nests were found, which is also a record number. From those nests, more than 6000 loggerheads have hatched.

Since the 1990s, the number of nesting loggerhead sea turtles has gone up by about 4% annually, according to the Georgia Sea Turtle Center.

Photo: flickr/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northeast Region

Texas has also seen some positive movements recently. A county commissioner called after maintenance workers on Magnolia Beach saw sea turtles hatching. They are Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles, which are considered to be the most endangered sea turtles in the world.

Agent R.J. Shelly of the Calhoun County Marine Extension spoke with CNN, saying: “As far as we know, there’s never been a Kemp’s Ridley nest on Magnolia Beach, ever.”


He went on to say: “We watched several of the turtles hatch in front of our eyes. I’ve been working on the bay for 31 years, and I’ve never seen a sea turtle nest hatch.”

The 2010 oil spill in the gulf hurt the population of sea turtles. Now that we are seeing an increase, it is a good indicator that things are getting better.

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