Sea Turtle Season at Coconut Bay
by / Thursday, 09 June 2016 / Published in Activities, Blog, General

Coconut Bay Beach Resort & Spa is the proud home of three sea turtle species. Hatching season lasts from March to November, offering a broad window for guests to experience the magic of this annual occasion. If you’re not familiar with the fascinating sea turtle hatching that takes place at Coconut Bay, you’re missing out on an unforgettable part of visiting St. Lucia.

St. Lucia Species

Three sea turtle species call the island home during hatching season. Leatherback turtles are critically endangered. Full-grown, they can be over six feet long and weigh more than a ton. Hatchlings, however, are just two to three inches in length.

Hawksbill turtles are another critically endangered species. They spend most of their lives in tropical coral reefs feeding on sponges. They weight about 180 pounds and measure about three-and-a-half feet long as adults. Hatchlings are just one or two inches long.

Green turtles are endangered, though not critically so. Full grown they measure up to three feet long and weigh around 350 pounds. These turtles begin hatching in April, about a month earlier than the other species on the island.

Sea Turtle Programs

If you’re interested in getting a closer look at the sea turtle hatchlings at Coconut Bay, you can join the Kidz Klub SCOUTS program on sea turtles. Sunday mornings at 10 a.m., a tour heads out to the beach to look for sea turtles. Though the program was developed to introduce young guests to the sea turtles, visitors of all ages are welcome to join the group for this event.

How to Handle Hatching Season

It’s important for guests to stay mindful of sea turtles during hatching season. Around sea turtle nests, you should keep all additional lights to a minimum. Flashlights, bonfires, and camera flashes are very disruptive to the sea turtles. Hatchlings head for the brightest horizon, which should be the sparkling ocean waters. If you introduce a brighter light, it can disorient them on this crucial journey.

Never disrupt a nest or touch the hatchlings. Human activity can frighten and disturb adult sea turtles as well, particularly when they’re resting or eating. Keep a respectful distance from these magnificent creatures to give them their best chance at survival as they struggle to make their way off the endangered species list.

Don’t miss out on the excitement and wonder of hatching season if you happen to be at Coconut Bay during these months. Approached carefully, this is a wondrous and memorable event.

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