A nest of tiny sea turtles shocked and delighted officials on Assateague Island National Seashore—and made history.
Loggerhead sea turtles typically lay their eggs on beaches from Florida to North Carolina. It’s rare for them to hatch anywhere north of Virginia.
But that’s what happened toward the end of September on Assateague.
“Approximately 100 hatchlings emerged from a single nest site in the Over Sand Vehicle zone and made their way out into the ocean,” the National Seashore’s Facebook page posted on Sept. 29.
It’s the first confirmed sea turtle hatch in Maryland history, wrote Keegan Burke, whose Facebook post with incredible photos and videos of the turtles has been shared thousands of times.
Assateague is hoping to welcome more turtles next year.
“Although there are no additional sea turtle nests expected to hatch this season, we are totally stoked about the prospect of finding another successful nest next summer!” the page wrote.