You may be surprised to learn that you share the beach with my tribe, the Loggerhead Nation. We are an ancient species, now endangered. Elusive and mysterious, you are unlikely to have seen us, though we do have this beach in common. Maybe you don't know that more than 100,000 of us nest on Florida beaches every year. In fact, 90 percent of my sisters who nest in the United States nest in Florida. We've been coming here for tens of thousands of years, long before you discovered the beauty of these beaches. We love them as you do. Maybe more.
We nest at night, under the light of the moon, which makes it difficult to navigate around the heaps and piles some of you humans leave on the beach. We are graceful and powerful swimmers, but moving on land is incredibly challenging, not only for us, but for our tiny hatchlings, who will be emerging soon. Only one in 1,000 of our hatchlings will survive to adulthood. We need your help. The stuff you leave on the beach is not only ugly, it is in our way. The holes you dig entrap our hatchlings, making them vulnerable to predators. Your bonfires and fireworks discourage our mothers from nesting here. And your porch lights disorient our young, leading them away from the ocean and into the dunes, where they cannot survive.
Therefore, we, the loggerheads, and our sisters the green turtles, respectfully ask that you take just a few moments to clear the beach we share with you at night, for the sake of our nesting mothers and hatchlings, and as a way to show your appreciation and gratitude for the beautiful beaches we all love. It is a simple act - perhaps your children can help you. We made a journey of a thousand or more miles to return here, to the very same beach where we were born, overcoming many obstacles to reach this place. We leave only our tracks on the beach. Why must you leave so much more?
A Concerned Member of The Loggerhead Nation