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Rare sea turtles shoot up nesting records in these months on the beaches of the southeastern United States, where scientists believe that the increase in the number of eggs is due to conservation measures that began more than 30 years ago .
Huge loggers weighing up to 136 kilos (300 pounds) crawl every summer along the southeast Atlantic coast to dig nests in the sand. Although nesting usually occurs between May and August, the record set in 2016 has already been exceeded in Georgia and South Carolina . North Carolina is also approaching the maximum count.
So far this year, researchers and volunteers in these three states have registered more than 12,300 nests dug by loggerheads , a species protected under the Endangered Species Act. That already exceeded 11,321 nests in the previous maximum count three years ago.
“My laboratory is almost full of floor to ceiling samples,” said University of Georgia professor Joe Nairn, who studies adult female turtles with DNA extracted from egg shell samples taken from each loggerhead nest found in all three state. “It seems pretty clear to us that this will be a great year.”
The loggerheads that come out of the waves of the Atlantic Ocean put approximately 100 eggs the size of a ping pong ball per nest. During the nesting season, volunteers from North Carolina to Florida travel the coast every day at dawn to register new nests and cover them with screens to protect them from wild boars and other predators until hatching.
The scientists suspect that it is the efforts of decades that now give results because the females do not reach full maturity and begin to nest until they are about 30 years old.
Source: El Universo