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LED Sea Turtle Lighting
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You Might Be At Fault
Sea Turtle hatchlings have an innate instinct that leads them in the direction of the brightest light, which is normally moonlight reflecting off of the oceans surface. Artificial lighting from beachside condos has caused hatchlings to become disoriented and wander inland, where they have been found on dunes, pool decks and parking lots of many unaware property’s.
Protect The Next Generation
It’s estimated that only 1 in 1,000 hatchlings will survive to adulthood. The baby sea turtles use natural light , which is usually over the ocean, along with the white crests of the waves to reach the water when they emerge from the nest. Any other light sources such as beachfront lighting, street lights, light from cars, campfires etc. can lead hatchlings in the wrong direction, also known as disorientation
What Lighting Violations?
Under specific local ordinances designed to protect sea turtle nesting, all indoor and outdoor lights visible from the beach must be shielded, repositioned, replaced or turned off from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Bright beach lights, flashlights, flash cameras, video recorders and other types of artificial lighting aren’t allowed either. Disturbing a sea turtle, its nests or hatchlings is also illegal. Those who violate any marine turtle lighting ordinance face fines of over $500 and sometimes up to six months in county jail. Most beachside cities have similar ordinances.
More About Sea Turtle Compliance
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) developed a lighting ordinance as a guideline to help coastal counties and municipalities in Florida develop their own local ordinances to protect sea turtles from the adverse effects of artificial lighting. There are many important nesting beaches in Florida with high disorientation rates due to bright beach front lighting. By knowing what types of fixtures and bulbs to avoid, you can help to protect sea turtle hatchlings and other beach-dwelling animals such as beach mice and shorebirds. When buying fixtures and bulbs for your beachfront property, remember the three golden rules: Keep it low, Keep it shielded, and Keep it long(wavelength).