Sunday, August 14, 2011

Excitement from Susan about our nest hatching!

Well, what an exciting week it has been!! I have just been so busy bragging to everyone about our successful hatching on Sunday, and excavation on Wednesday. ;) It has also been such a privilege to work with so many other nice WBSTP volunteers.

Because of all the excitement, I had my heart set on finding turtle tracks this week. Alas, I found none. However, I did find a substantial amount of litter in zone #3 today. For the past few weeks, I have found little to no glass bottles, which is a nice trend, because last year I remember finding quite a few. Today I did not find a single piece of glass. I collected one Target bag of trash, and 3/4 of my reusable bag (3 grocery bags) of reusables and recyclables.

The majority of the trash consisted of plastic such as cracker, chip, and snack wrappers; drink lids; straws; bottle caps; ziplock, grocery, and ice bags, and cups. I also found one large clear sheet of plastic that was perhaps from a case of bottled water or something. For some reason I also found a lot of random pieces of rope and string today, along with stray clothing items such as hair ties (lots of these), socks, and a pair of plaid boxer shorts. 

There was a seemingly unending number of cigarette butts.

Reusables and recyclables included aluminum beer and juice cans, plastic water bottles, one pair of neon green flip flops, a pair of blue snorkeling flippers, and several sand toys.

One thing that still bums me out is other people's disregard for the litter at the beach. I am trying to get past this, I really am, because I realize there are a lot of other like minded people in this world. But today I had an experience that really bummed me out. While I was walking my zone, I was approaching a family of four: a mom, dad, and two elementary school age kids. As I walked, I could see them looking at me with a strange look, as though they disapproved of what I was doing or were angry at me. (I don't get this look often, so I found it weird.) As I drew nearer, the family hustled from the water up towards one of the beach accesses. As they passed, I could see that the daughter was eating a piece of fruit. Then as I reached the spot where they had been standing, I found a plastic produce sticker in the sand that said "black plum." I was so sad that this young girl had seen me picking up litter, then still decided to throw a piece of plastic on the ground.

I'm not really sure what to do about this. Today I have been asking myself, "how can I help spread the word about keeping our beach clean, and reach these people who don't seem to care?" I will meditate on this this week.


Susan Z. Miller
Freelance Writer and Editor

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