Diamondback Terrapin Hatching Season Closes Out A Month Earlier

WELLFLEET – The diamondback terrapin hatching season is coming to a close nearly a month earlier than last year, according to the Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary.  

The sanctuary says that the shorter season is a result of the warmer than average temperatures this summer. However, the sanctuary says its found 257 nests across three intensively monitored sites–on sanctuary property, as well as in Orleans– resulting in 1,561 hatchlings.

Those numbers are down from last year’s total of 321 nests, when the sanctuary released 2,358 baby turtles. Only the sanctuary’s White’s Lane site in Orleans had an increase this year with 160 hatchlings compared to 115 in 2017.

The drop in protected nests and successful hatchlings compared to 2017 could be the result of being at the bottom of what appears to be a regular three-year cycle of nesting highs and lows.

By TIM DUNN, CapeCod.com News Center

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