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Sea Turtles Are Thriving While Beaches Are Temporarily Closed

An endangered sea turtle species is able to nest in Juno Beach, Florida without disturbances from beachgoers.

Nature is getting a much-needed break from the daily disturbances of people as coronavirus has forced millions to stay inside . In Florida, an endangered sea turtle species is even thriving, as beaches remain closed to the public. 

Researchers at Loggerhead Marinelife Center told a CBS affiliate in West Palm Beach that Leatherback sea turtles are able to nest their eggs on Juno Beach, FL without the usual disturbances from people or dogs. Juno Beach is one of the worlds most densely nested sea turtle beaches in the world, according to Loggerhead researchers. 

The Leatherback is the largest sea turtle in the world, weighing up to 2,000 pounds, and the World Wildlife Foundation currently lists the species as vulnerable.

“We’re excited to see our turtles thrive in this environment," Sarah Hirsch, the senior manager of research and data at Loggerhead Marinelife Center told CBS12. "Our world has changed, but these turtles have been doing this for millions of years and it’s just reassuring and gives us hope that the world is still going on.”

In Florida, several beaches have closed completely to the public. But others are still open, in accordance with Gov. Ron DeSantis’ executive order that went into effect on April 1. The order permits “essential activities,” which include “walking, biking, hiking, fishing, running, swimming, taking care of pets and surfing.”

With fewer boats and people in the water, Hirsch also adds that the turtles are mating closer to shore, while Florida Fish and Wildlife says manatees are appearing more and are less at risk for boating deaths.