Friday, August 5, 2016

Tides & Turtles

Here at Cumberland Island NS, the tides are a very important factor to take into consideration. Patrolling on the beach would not be a good idea during high tide. There is little beach to drive on when the tide gets high enough, which could lead to your vehicle getting stuck out there. Checking the tides daily has become an important daily routine. The beach is sometimes much faster than taking the main road but tides must be considered. One of the biggest factors that applies to law enforcement in terms of the tide is the rack line. The rack line is the highest point at which the water rises during a tide cycle. This line moves daily with the tides. Cumberland Island NS does not have jurisdiction between the water line and the rack line. Only certain park service regulations apply within this area. The tides change daily, and so does our jurisdiction.
This past week I spent a morning helping the turtle technicians. They have to go to each nest 5 days after it has hatched to count the eggs that have hatched, did not hatch and if there are any dead or alive turtles still left in the nest. The main species of turtle we have are logger head sea turtles, which are a threatened species. We dug up 12 nests and found 42 alive turtles. Cumberland Island NS has a total of 865 nests currently. There are no lights allowed on the beach at night, unless they are red and there is no beach driving at night because of the turtles. This was my first time ever seeing a sea turtle. It's important to be educated about the resources we are protecting and to have good relations with other divisions.


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