Have you ever considered the impact of artificial light sources in regards to sea turtle nesting activities?
Here at Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Clearwater & Tampa Bay, we do. We service a large portion of local beaches including Clearwater and St. Pete Beach, Redington Beach, Indian Rocks Beach, Dunedin, Madeira Beach, Belleair Beach, Tierra Verde and many more. With this in mind, we make sure to extend special consideration to beachfront lighting in regards to turtle nesting season. We love our lovely sea turtle Mothers and babies too, after all!
Five different sea turtles nest on Florida's beaches. These are the loggerhead, the green turtle, the leatherback, the hawksbill and the Kemp’s ridley. Loggerheads are the most common to nest on Pinellas County beaches and are the most well-known.
Mother sea turtles prefer dark, quiet beaches to lay their eggs. The eggs in each sea-turtle nest will typically incubate for 50 to 60 days before hatching. Once they emerge from their eggs, hatchlings will make their way to the ocean. Light pollution from improper beachfront lighting will often confuse them and cause the hatchlings to wander inland where they can perish from dehydration or predators. Reducing illumination from beachfront lighting is a good step in making sure our turtles get to where they need to be.
*Did you know The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has developed a model lighting ordinance as a guideline to help coastal counties and municipalities in Florida develop their own local ordinances to protect sea turtles from the adverse effects of artificial lighting?*
Yes, and Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Clearwater & Tampa Bay receives calls from clients with beachfront lighting schemes for our advice on making sure their lighting adheres to these guidelines. Turtle-friendly lighting can provide adequate lighting for safety, attractiveness and still meet compliance with beachfront lighting ordinances.
Do you know the requirements for turtle-friendly outdoor lighting?
Turtle-friendly lighting uses long-wavelength light, the light is also directed downward, is low to the ground, and is shielded. We address these needs for our beachfront customers by offering them the choice of trading out their traditional warm white LED's to amber LED's in order to meet their needs. You can see in the picture below the difference in color the amber lighting provides:
Do you know when turtle-season occurs in our area?
Sea turtle nesting season extends from May 1 through Oct. 31, 2019.
What to do if you have beachfront lighting
Call Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Clearwater & Tampa Bay to learn more about switching out your warm white LED outdoor lighting to amber during turtle season. Contact us to arrange a free design consultation. We can determine if your lighting is a candidate for the switch. We can also schedule switching back following the end of turtle nesting season.