Sea Turtle Nesting Season on Don Pedro Island
Sea turtle nesting season is May-October on Don Pedro Island! Every summer all across Florida thousands of sea turtles crawl onto the shore at night to lay their eggs in the sand before returning to the water. It is estimated that approximately 60,000 – 84,000 nests are laid every year!
Located just an hour south of Sarasota and hour north of Fort Myers, Get Up and Go Kayaking Don Pedro Island offers 100% clear kayak guided ecotours that give you the best opportunity to immerse yourself while you learn about nature and spot wildlife like sea turtles as we paddle the shallow grass flats and mangroves tunnels before exploring the beach where they like to nest. If you’re lucky you might even see evidence of their crawl on to the beach from the night before with our guides to help you identify what you are seeing!
Don Pedro Island boasts not only gorgeous views of the Gulf of Mexico but is a critical nesting site for loggerhead and even green sea turtles. According to Florida State Parks over 200 sea turtles come to lay their eggs on the beaches on Don Pedro Island State Park. Approximately two months after the eggs are laid about 80% hatch and only half of those that hatch will make it into adulthood! Florida Fish and Wildlife estimates that it is only 1 in 1000 turtles! Park rangers and volunteers of Don Pedro-Knight Island Sea Turtle Patrol mark, monitor and collect data about the nests and hatchlings through a citizen science program to ensure generations to come will still get to enjoy seeing sea turtles come to the island to nest.Sea turtles face many threats and all species of sea turtles are threatened or endangered. So what can we do if we do see a sea turtle nesting, nest, or hatchlings? According to the Don Pedro Knight Island Sea Turtle Patrol – keep your distance! As with all wildlife the more space we are able to give them the better.
Visiting Don Pedro Island State Park by clear kayak is sure to engage all ages and a great trip for those looking to explore Florida’s best kept secret and private beach on the Gulf of Mexico just an hour south of the crowds in Sarasota at Siesta and Lido Key, step into a different world! Our two and half hour clear kayak tour includes a chance to take a dip and walk the beach looking for evidence of sea turtle crawls, fossilized shark teeth and shells!