OKALOOSA ISLAND — A Baker woman got the show of a lifetime when she spotted a large loggerhead sea turtle laying a nest last week.
Kaitlynn Kox volunteers for the Jackson Guard by patrolling portions of Okaloosa Island every Friday to check for new sea turtle nests. She said this summer she’s seen trails and nests after they’ve been laid, but Friday morning got to witness the process in action when she spotted a loggerhead laying her eggs before heading back into the Gulf.
“It was awesome,” she said. “It’s near the end of the nesting season, so I was pretty lucky to even find this one late in the season. It might be the last one for the side of the beach that I patrol.”
Knox said the nest was laid in front of the Eglin Air Force Base beach access on the eastern end of the Island. There was no one else around on the beach while the turtle was there, and she observed from a distance until the turtle went back into the sea. She then marked off the nest with posts, tape and a sign warning people not to disturb the nest.
Sea turtle nesting season runs May 1 through Oct. 31. Their eggs incubate for about two months before hatching.