• Sea Turtle Hatchling

  • Leatherback Nesting Adult Female Sea Turtle

  • Sea Turtle Nest

  • Inland Skyglow


​Our treasured visitors

Sea Turtles are found swimming in our coastal waters and inland lagoons all year long.  However, from March through October, thousands of loggerhead, leatherback, and green sea turtles come ashore to nest on our beaches. Palm Beach County has more sea turtle nests per mile than anywhere else in the United States!  Approximately 2,000,000 sea turtles hatch on our beaches every year.


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​2016 Nesting Season Update!

​2016 was a record breaking year for loggerhead sea turtles. Many beaches, including several in Palm Beach County, surpassed their previous record nest count. This is excellent news for a species that declined rapidly just a decade ago. Thank you to all the dedicated volunteers who monitor the beaches around the state so that we can better understand the trends in sea turtle populations!

 Turtle Tips

Sea turtles have poor vision on land.

This makes it difficult for them to crawl  around objects on the beach and they are unable to go backwards. Many times, they return to the sea without nesting if an obstacle is encountered.

For this reason, it is very important to keep our beaches free of debris and potential obstacles.

 Palm Beach County


ERM has been studying and protecting sea turtles for 20 years - one of the first programs in the state of Florida!

Biologists collect data on sea turtle health and behavior, nesting activities, hatchling success rates, presence in our nearshore and inshore waterways, and influences from storms and humans.

To view a list of Sea Turtle Nesting Reports, click here.

ERM also administers beachfront lighting regulations along the coast to prevent coastal lighting from causing sea turtle disorientations. Disorientations occur when hatchlings or nesting females crawl away from the water instead of toward it which can be attributed to beachfront lighting.

To view more information on Beachfront Lighting Permits, click here.

 Need Help

Do not disturb sea turtles, nests, or eggs - it's against the law!

If you encounter a nesting turtle, keep lights off, remain still, and keep your distance.  

Report all dead, injured, or stranded sea turtles or harassment of adults, hatchlings, or nests to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-888-404-FWCC (3922).

Turn off coastal lights and keep flashlights and phones off while on the beach at night.

Reduce litter and marine debris - especially fishing line and plastic.

Keep pets away from nesting females, nests, and hatchlings.

Always fill in holes dug in the sand and knock down sand castles.

Do not disturb nest markers  - organizations monitor sea turtles.

Operate your boat with caution- sea turtles are found offshore, nearshore and inshore (Lake Worth Lagoon and the Intracoastal Waterway), and have to surface to breathe.

Go on an approved sea turtle walk with a licensed guide, click here for sites in Palm Beach County.