Higher Than Average Water Temps May Bring Earlier Turtle Nests

It’s not just our imagination that spring has come a month early this year. The water temperature in Charleston Harbor is at temperatures usually recorded at the end of April. The turtle team received this communication from DNR regarding water temperatures and the potential for early turtle nests.

According to the customs house monitoring station, water temperature hit 20 C on March 23 , went down some ,and is now back at 20.1 C. Harbor temperature historically reaches 20.0 C on about April 24. So, we seem to about 26 days or more ahead of schedule – unprecedented in my experience. We heard a cobia was caught yesterday. I expect turtles are in the coastal waters and shrimp/crabs/horseshoe crabs etc., will be spawning early… the peeler crab fishery has already gotten started.

Some of our spring birds are returning; purple martins have been visiting the mansion at the ferry dock, robins were carousing on Old House Lane, and a Black-Necked Stilt was seen in the impoundment. In addition, our mosquitoes managed to survive the winter and have made their presence known.

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