Sea Turtle Season starts April 1!
Sea turtle season is upon us! Beginning April 1st, we will be on the lookout for sea turtle activity as well as their nests. You may ask how this affects your beach portraits. If there is a nest where we plan to shoot, we will just have to change our location. These nests (pictured below) are protected by law, which means if we are in an area where there are nests around, we are not to disturb these nests. If the nests are disturbed, the baby turtles may die or not hatch. Luckily it is not a big deal to walk just a little bit further, past a nest for your beach session.
Sea Turtle season doesn't just affect you during your beach portrait session. While you and your family are at the beach, you are also expected to leave the nests alone. This means you have to keep your dogs on a leash and watch them at all times. How bad would you feel if Fido dug up a nest of sea turtles? Fido isn't the only one you need to worry about, as children with their curious minds often like to wander over to the nests as well.
When you are winding down for the night in your beach rental, keep in mind also that Hilton Head Island has a "Lights Out" rule anytime after 10pm. This means if your house or rental can be seen from the beach, you must turn all lights off by 10pm. Sea turtle hatchlings follow the moonlight into the ocean when they hatch. If they see your lights, they can get confused and go further inland, which could result in ultimate death for those hatchlings.
Respecting the wildlife of Hilton Head Island isn't hard, and it's not a huge adjustment. It's just small changes to make throughout your day and being more aware that they are there and it is up to you and your family to protect them!