Sea Turtles at St. Lucie Inlet Preserve

Sea Turtles

The beach at St. Lucie Inlet Preserve State Park is an important nesting area for marine sea turtles. There are three species of sea turtles nest at the park, including leatherback, loggerhead and green. 

Nesting season runs March-October, with peak nesting occurring mid-summer. With no lights or development along the dunes, the beach at the park makes for a great nesting location. If there is too much artificial lighting along the beach some turtle hatchlings can become disoriented and crawl away from the ocean instead of towards it. 

Each year the park has around 1,000 nests on the beach. Nests have an average of 100 eggs that incubate for 60 days before hatching. 

The life of a newborn sea turtle is very perilous, everything from crabs to sharks feed on hatchlings. Every morning at sunrise the beach is surveyed for new nests that are marked and recorded. 

Female sea turtles return to the same beach over and over to make their nests, making preserving pristine beaches like the one at St. Lucie Inlet Preserve State Park extremely important.