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Rare Sea Turtle pays a Visit, and Leaves a Gift, at a Virgin Islands Resort

Hey everyone, Eileen again with a quick and interesting bit of news!

One of our former TFP colleagues recently shared with us an exciting experience, and I wanted to pass it along. Erica Palmer, an assistant curator at Coral World in St. Thomas and a former That Fish Place Fish Room Supervisor, knew that the story would peak our interests, and she is sooo lucky for being able to be a part of it.

Leatherback-turtle-on-St-Thomas-picture-6During my college days, I participated in loggerhead sea turtle nesting studies and research along the South Carolina coast. Our volunteers would walk the beach every morning looking for the telltale “crawl”, the tracks made by the female turtle as she crawled up the beach to lay her nest, but we very rarely ever caught a glimpse of the turtle in action.
Leatherback-turtle-on-St-Thomas-picture-7

Visitors to a beach resort in the Virgin Islands got to witness the proverbial “Holy Grail” of turtle nestings when a very rare Leatherback Turtle crawled right up to the line of beach chairs in front of guests and hotels workers alike to lay her eggs!  Erica  is quoted in an article as saying that the rare late season nest is likely the last one that this turtle had the urge to lay before heading back out to sea to the turtles’ feeding grounds. The nest is now under surveillance by the resort to help keep the eggs safe. The nest is due to hatch in mid to late September.  I hope she sends us an update!

Visit the article on National Geographic’s website for more information on this exciting event: http://blogs.nationalgeographic.com/blogs/news/chiefeditor/2009/07/leatherback-turtle-virgin-islands.html

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About Eileen Daub

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Marine Biologist/Aquatic Husbandry Manager I was one of those kids who said "I want to be a marine biologist when I grow up!"....except then I actually became one. After a brief time at the United States Coast Guard Academy, I graduated from Coastal Carolina University in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina in 2004. Since then, I've been a marine biologist at That Fish Place - That Pet Place, along with a Fish Room supervisor, copywriter, livestock inventory controller, livestock mail-order supervisor and other duties here and there. I also spent eight seasons as a professional actress with the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire and in other local roles. If that isn't bad enough, I'm a proud Crazy Hockey Fan (go Flyers and go Hershey Bears!).