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Next Monthly Board Meeting
Monday Jan 6th, 2020
Details to be Announced
Upcoming Events:

Island Arts Festival Nov 30th
Lower Keys Chamber Grounds

Nautical Expo: Jan 11th & 12th
Lower Keys Chamber Grounds
Team Work Makes Dream Work
20,000 Sea Oats Planted in less than 2 Hours!
In 2015 The Alachua Conservation Trust (ACT) received grant funding from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to create a pilot program using land management agreements to protect natural beach habitat. At that time, Harry Appel, President of Save-A-Turtle of the Florida Keys approached the Alachua Conservation Trust representatives and proposed Long Beach on Big Pine Key as a “beta site” for beach restoration. Long Beach is among the Keys beaches surveyed for sea turtle nesting through FWCC. In this regard, Save-A-Turtle of the Florida Keys was chosen to be coastal conservation land managers for the beach environment in the Florida Keys. Since that time, Save-A-Turtle has been working with the ACT, taking steps to secure land management agreements to permit this restoration.

Hurricane Irma caused a major setback to the effort since the beach sustained major damage due to the storm, but this also meant a great opportunity to attempt to accelerate the process with landowners. Since Irma, work has been ongoing, managed by Save-A-Turtle, restoring beach and natural habitat on Big Pine Key, including dune building and restoration with native species plantings to prevent erosion and stabilize the beach naturally.

Finally after all this time, the first segment of the beach was restored and planted with 20,000 sea oat plugs. Almost 50 volunteers from various organizations including Their Planet, Save-A-Turtle and the Conch Republic Marine Army, plus numerous good Samaritan citizens turned out to plant the sea oats.
Thanks to the overwhelming support of people and organizations, this massive amount of beach grasses were planted in about 2 hours!

These plants will grow rapidly, and need no maintenance. The Key deer typically have no interest in eating them either. These fast growing beach grasses are expected to fill in to full growth within just one year. Save-A-Turtle is continuing to build dunes on additional properties that have signed on to the project, and also is continuing to secure additional land management agreements from more property owners on Big Pine Key. The agreements include private homeowners as well County owned open space lots.

It is the hope of the Alachua Conservation Trust, as well as Save-A-Turtle, that once the beta site is completed and proven to be resilient, sustainable and beneficial to the environment, that this project will be expanded to additional beaches in the Keys as it continues to grow through the entire State of Florida.


Photo below shows grasses planted
July 2018 on the same beach.
2019 Annual SAT Banquet was Fabulous
Chinese Auction
Dessert
JA Painting & Winner
Our Annual Banquet was held on November 16th at the Florida Keys Country Club in Marathon. As always, it was a fun filled evening with wonderful food and turtley conversation! Approximately 65 people attended and enjoyed a wonderful presentation by Dr. Douglas Mader of the Marathon Veterinary Hospital entitled "Turtles of the Serengeti". Dr. Doug showed us amazing slides of the African Wildlife including water buffalo, lions, elephants,rhino's, giraffes, baboons and the one and only turtle they encountered ! He then followed up with photos of his and his wife Dr. Gerry's climb to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa.

Throughout the evening, Jessica Ann of Jessica Ann Art treated us to a live painting of a sea turtle, which was raffled off upon completion before the event ended. Watching Jessica bring this sea turtle to life on the canvas, coupled with the brilliant colors and details, was truly a treat. Barry Roberts, an SAT Board member was the lucky winner of the painting.
Dinner was delicious with both vegan and non-vegan dishes provided. And the most amazing vegan Caramel Salted cupcakes were baked and donated by Board Member Jennifer DeMaria. Can you say absolutely delicious????

Lastly, we held a Chinese Auction with nearly 50 prizes including donations from Summerland Sandals, Key West Hammocks, Boondocks, Artists in Paradise, South of the Seven, Capt. Hook Charters, Pigeon Key, Zazzles, Oceans So Blue, Jessica Ann Art, and some beautiful sea turtle items from the private collection of Herb & Ye Barnett, who were two of the original founding and Lifetime Members of Save-A-Turtle.

We'd like to thank all of our volunteers, beach walkers, supporters and the folks at The Turtle Hospital who came out to be a part of our Annual Banquet. And thank you to Dr. Doug and Jessica Ann for the entertainment. It truly was a wonderful night!
Wishing you the Happiest of Holidays
As the holidays approach, we would like to take this time to thank all of you for your continued support. Thanks to you donations, adoptions and merchandise purchases, we are proud to say that during the past 24 months post Irma, we have been able to:

  • Restock our nesting supplies for volunteers
  • Replace and purchase new education materials of all kinds
  • Supplement the Florida Sea Turtle License Plate Grant to help replace our Mobile Education Trailer
  • Provide two $1000 scholarships to students attending the College of the Florida Keys ( with more to be awarded in the near future)
  • Support beach clean ups
  • Purchase turtle friendly lighting
  • Pay vendor fees allowing us to attend local marine based events and festivals
  • Restock our inventory to help raise funds
  • And so much more!

Rebuilding our all volunteer non-profit organization was quite daunting, especially since most of our volunteers and board members sustained major damage from the storm themselves. However, your generosity has made all of this possible and we are so very grateful.

We wish you all a very Happy Hanukkah, a Merry Christmas and a New Year filled with peace, love and the best of health.

Thank you! ~ Save-A-Turtle Officers, Board Members & Beach Walkers
And of course...the Sea Turtles too!
Don't forget to add some Turtle Love to your Holiday Gifts
Long Sleeve Unisex Tee
SAT Pura Vida Bracelet
Turtle Tracks Hoodie
Report Sick, Injured or Dead Sea Turtles in Fla to FWCC at 888-404- FWCC
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