Thank you all for picking up that trash and sending me your observations of what is going on at WB. I have updated the blog and you can click on it here: wbkeepitclean.blogspot.com.
When you look at the site, you may find that your report is not there yet, not to worry, I will be posting more soon.
I hope you are enjoying reading the reports and viewing the pics. I know I am.
So far, we have picked up 111.5 bags of trash. (24.5 this week). If you have not sent in your reports yet, you can do it now and I will get it posted as soon as I can.
Tracks before Trash:
I appreciate the zealous spirit all of you have about keeping our ocean clean. However, for those of you who are WBSTP volunteers, I wanted to remind you to not forget to look for tracks. I have heard several of you say that sometimes there is so much trash, you have to remind yourself to look for tracks. I feel that way too sometimes, but lucky for me, John provides an extra set of eyes.
Please remember that the mission for WBSTP is to monitor for tracks. In the past years, I have suggested that volunteers walk in one direction for tracks and wait to collect trash on the way back. I know that once you take your eyes off a piece of trash, it is difficult to see it again and you may be tempted to go ahead and pick it up; that is fine as long as you also remember to carefully monitor for tracks. If we missed Mamma Turtle tracks, we would feel terrible; so please please remember: "Tracks before Trash".
The pattern that has developed so far is that the trash cans and the recycling cans are often overflowing. I have learned that from Memorial Day until the end of the season, the trash is collected twice a day and three times a day on the weekends. A few of you have suggested and commented that an evening trash collection would be good as many people do not leave the beach until the evening, at which time, they leave their garbage (or at least try) in the trash cans. This creates a problem as the trash sometimes gets scattered on the wind or scattered by the birds in the morning. Also, when visitors walk across the dunes in the mornings, it is unsightly to be greeted by full trashcans overflowing onto the sand.
Another problem that is presented by overflowing trashcans is that good citizens do not have anywhere to place the garbage they have collected and this could discourage people from participating in spontaneous clean ups.
June 1 was a release day at the Sea Turtle Hospital. It was very exciting. If you have looked at the news stations, picked up the lumina newspaper or the star news paper, then you know a now healthy turtle by the name of Remembrance was among one of the released. This turtle is special to us because she was rescued from WB last Memorial Day (thus the name Remembrance). She was very thin, lethargic and just about lifeless at the time of her rescue. However, on Wednesday, she was robust, active and raring to go!!!! You can see pictures and read about her release at http://www.luminanews.com/section.asp?sid=23&iid=275 or at http://www.starnewsonline.com/article/20110601/ARTICLES/110609974. If you go to the star news site, scroll down to "more photos" and click on "2011 Summer Turtle Release". If you prefer the Jacksonville Daily News, you can click here: http://www.jdnews.com/articles/-91658--.html
You can also see pics on the WB facebook page posted by our own Susan Miller: https://www.facebook.com/WrightsvilleBeachSeaTurtleProject?ref=ts
or on Topsail Voice facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Topsail-Voice/103353583036131
You can watch the WWAY video here: http://www.wwaytv3.com/video/2011/06/sea-turtles-rehabbed-and-returned-to-the-sea or the News Channel 14 video here: http://coastal.news14.com/content/641798/rehabilitation-center-sends-25-sea-turtles-back-home
I have to say this is my favorite release yet. It was more magical than I can explain and the whole universe seemed to come together in celebration. There was a huge Sting Ray (largest I have ever seen) in the sound behind the hospital prior to the release; and there was a very huge owl on the base of the water tower when we returned to the hospital after the release (purely amazing). The owl's talons were as large or larger than my hand. I could not believe my eyes!!
But even better than all of that, for me, was that Amanda Andrews sang a native american song to Remembrance while we were in route to release Remembrance to her true mother, Mother Ocean. Translation of the song's words have been lost over the generations, but the song is sung to send positive energy. It brought tears to my eyes and I will never forget it!!!!
Thank you all for your dedication to our Earth.
Here are before and after pics of Remembrance that was shared with me by Amanda. In the before pic, she was placed on a flotation device to help her float so that she would eat.