Sea Turtle Walks
Loggerhead Marinelife Center
at Juno Beach
Reservations open in early May. Look under summer programming. Call to find how to make a reservation. The walks usually fill up within 3 weeks of the first signup.
There is a limit of 25 persons per night. Children must be 8 years or older. All participants must be able to walk at least a half-mile.
Instead of miles, the walks cover about 300 yards of beach north or south of the center. There are that many turtles! About 5,000 loggerheads nest along the 6-mile stretch of beach the center monitors, so finding a turtle usually isn't too difficult.
The fee is $17 per person, adult or child, and must be paid in advance. If bad weather cancels a walk, no rain-checks and no refunds will be given. Walk-ins pay a $20 cash fee but no guarantee of a spot.
Don't bring a flashlight; they're not permitted. But do bring bug spray. No flash photos and no photos using any device with a lighted LCD screen.
You don't need to make a night walk to view sea turtles close-up. The Marinelife Center is the only turtle hospital between Orlando and Ft. Lauderdale that cares for sick or injured turtles. Once the turtles are rehabilitated, they are returned to the sea.
The Loggerhead Marinelife Center is also very active in sea turtle research. It monitors turtle nesting from March 1st until October 31st along 5.4 miles of Juno Beach, one of the most densely nested sea turtle beaches in the U.S.
Summer turtle walks observe nesting loggerhead. Earlier, in the spring, leatherbacks--largest of all sea turtles--nest in the area but public walks are not conducted during the leatherback season.
Of special interest to sea turtle fans is the Center's new emphasis on leatherback turtle research using satellite tracking (in collaboration between the Marinelife Center, WIDECAST and Duke University). It's possible to follow some of the tagged turtles on the web.
Contact Information: Call 561/627-8280. Website Open Mon-Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sun. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Located at 14200 U.S. Hwy. 1, Loggerhead Park, Juno Beach 33408, just north of Donald Ross Road on U.S. Highway 1. Map
The Loggerhead Marinelife Center's website
is one you'll return to often.