Last summer during a vacation to Topsail Island, North Carolina, I was introduced to the wonderful and tragic lives of sea turtles.
My brother and wife, who go to Topsail annually, have become involved in the turtles lives, from preparing for hatchings to releasing rescued and healed ones back to the ocean. I even got to "sit" a turtle nest for a night, waiting for the hatch to happen!
There are local volunteers and "vacation" volunteers who look after all the turtle nests along the coastline. Each one is marked and readied for the hatch under the careful direction of the local Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue And Rehabilitation Center.
The Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue And Rehabilitation Center is also very busy with rescuing and healing hurt and sick sea turtles.
They work with many other sea turtle hospitals along the U.S. coast to make sure that every turtle retrieved from the ocean gets the proper care. These hospitals exist with mostly volunteer help and are usually busting at the seams with rehabilitating turtles.
If you find yourself along the southern coast of the U.S. take some time to find a sea turtle hospital. I bet you won't be disappointed with your experience.
My brother makes ramps for the hatchlings to make their way to the ocean. Most hatches happen at night when the sand is cooler.
This is what a nest looks like after a hatch. The nest is analyzed 3 days after a hatch and any live babies are gathered and released into the ocean.
A rehabilitated sea turtle being released back into the ocean with happy onlookers and volunteers.
And what does all this boil down to for Cat's Meow? I just couldn't get these turtles out of my mind after my summer experience, so of course they have showed up as Cat's Meow pieces. Click the button below to see my Sea Turtle designs.