Since 1983, Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch (AMITW) has coordinated conservation efforts for nine miles of Manatee County shoreline. In three decades, we monitored 17,735 turtle activities and protected 8,723 nests. This includes at least 301,694 turtle eggs and 377,743 hatchlings that departed the beach to become a future generation of loggerheads that will return to the region as they reach maturity — in about 30 years.
It’s not.” (Dr. Seuss)
The program includes staff and volunteers who have documented the status of shoreline habitat and trends in sea turtle nesting. These data show that nesting by loggerhead turtles has declined, then rebounded in recent years. Nest destruction by both natural and non-indigenous predators has also increased during the same time period.
AMITW & Shorebird Monitoring coordinates with county, state and federal efforts to conserve sea turtles — primarily loggerheads and green sea turtles. Manatee and Sarasota Counties host the highest density of loggerhead nests in the Gulf of Mexico.
Whether humans respect other species enough to protect sea turtles and their essential habitats will depend on the understanding developed by marine conservation biologists.
Mission StatementTo conserve the ecosystem of Anna Maria Island and its’ surrounding waters for people, sea turtles, and shorebirds in partnership with the island community.
Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch is also staffed by wonderful volunteers!