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Sea turtles topic of CMA’s “Making Waves” speaker series

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• Free educational seminar on Thursday, May 21
• Topic: Sea turtle lighting and nesting season

CLEARWATER – Clearwater Marine Aquarium continues its free Making Waves speaker series May 21 with Rick Herren, Sea Turtle Lighting Specialist at the Sea Turtle Conservancy (STC).

Prior to STC, Herren oversaw Indian River County’s Habitat Conservation Plan for sea turtle protection. Herren has numerous years of practical lighting experience and is currently in charge of creating a sea turtle lighting course for architects, lighting designers and code enforcement officers.

The public is reminded to turn out unnecessary beach lights to help prevent disorientation of female sea turtles and hatchlings. It is suggested to close your curtains and be mindful of bright lights shining on the beach. Female sea turtles are very sensitive to lights, activity, or obstructions on the beach when attempting to lay eggs. A false crawl will result when a female sea turtle emerges from the water, but is either disturbed by bright lights, noise and activity around the nest when she is trying to locate a suitable spot, or even obstacles such as beach furniture or sand castles, which may impede her ability to reach a desired nesting location. Once hatchlings emerge, they can suffer from lighting pollution and become disoriented, preventing them from finding the water.

This free speaker series is geared towards anyone wanting to learn more about marine life and is open to all ages.

6.00 p.m. – Welcome and refreshments provided by Costco Wholesale
6.30–7.30 p.m. – Guest speaker, Rick Herren
7.30–8:00 p.m. – Q & A session

Location: Clearwater Marine Aquarium, 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater, FL