Breaking News
More () »

Padre Island National Seashore sees record-breaking green sea turtle nesting season despite challenges

Officials encourage residents to drive safely on the beach, especially during nesting season.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Officials at the Padre Island National Seashore are celebrating a successful year of green turtle nesting despite the challenges they have faced, including the intense heat. 

Padre Island National Seashore Chief of Sea Turtle Science and Recovery Donna Shaver said that they are observing a record-breaking number of green sea turtle nests along the Texas Gulf Coast, particularly on our South Texas beaches. 

"We've already hit 46 green turtle nests found on the Texas coast, our previous record was 36," she said. 

Shaver said that there is still more time left in the nesting season to find even more nests on Padre and South Padre. But why the surge? 

"We are seeing it because decades and decades of conservation efforts on the forging grounds for these turtles and on nesting beaches," she said. 

Despite all the challenges the turtles face, Shaver said that heat can have a devastating impact on the endangered species. 

"There are so many eggs that aren't moved. The eggs become so hot they don't hatch, it's lethal," she said. 

According to Shaver, the temperature can determine the sex of the sea turtles, and generally, certain high temperatures can result 100 percent females with no mates to fertilize with.

"If you have no production from your beach, pretty soon you're going to have no turtles; there's no imp[act back into the system," she said.

Mission-Aransas National Estuarine Research Reserve Stewardship Coordinator Katie Swanson said heat can also have external impacts.

"Extreme heat can impact the food webs as well. So you might be impacting resources the turtles need," she said. 

Officials encourage residents to drive safely on the beach, especially during nesting season. 


More from 3News on KIIITV.com:  

Subscribe to our YouTube channel for your daily news and exclusive extended interviews.

Do you have a news tip? Tell 3!

Email tell3@kiiitv.com so we can get in touch with you about your story should we have questions or need more information. We realize some stories are sensitive in nature. Let us know if you'd like to remain anonymous.

Before You Leave, Check This Out