2012 Sea turtle wash-back program

St. Johns County Sea TurtleSonia Colyer announced to Historic City News in St Augustine that volunteers are needed for the 2012 St Johns County sea turtle wash-back program; providing assistance to distressed juvenile sea turtles that have washed ashore because they became entangled in seaweed — commonly following a storm.

Washback sea turtles are exhausted and in need of medical attention, Colyer said.

Volunteers are needed to survey the wrack lines for washback sea turtles and help with transportation to a rehabilitation facility.

Washback season began July 1 and will continue through November 31.

Wrack lines may form at any time and volunteers are needed on an on call basis. Volunteers will be contacted when a wrack line has formed and are asked to complete a survey during their scheduled time.

Volunteer Requirements and Mandatory Trainings:

Volunteers must complete an application, pass a background check and possess a valid Florida driver’s license. Volunteers are required to attend a general information meeting and complete a mandatory training. The meetings will provide basic information regarding sea turtles and the purpose of the volunteer program. The mandatory training will provide more details on the volunteer’s role, the assigned zone, introduction of Zone Captain and detailed training regarding handling and transportation of washback sea turtles.

General Information Meeting – July 14, 2012, 1:30 pm – 3:30 pm
Anastasia Island Library, 124 Sea Grove Main Street St. Augustine Beach, FL 32080

General Information Meeting – August 4, 2012, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm
Anastasia Island Library, 124 Sea Grove Main Street St., Augustine Beach, FL 32080

Mandatory Training – August 9, 2012, 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
County Annex Building, 500 San Sebastian View, St. Augustine, FL 32084

Application and Registration:

Volunteers must register online.

Children under 18 may volunteer if they are accompanied by an adult and meet these requirements (except driver’s license). Students may also use volunteer hours for school credit.

Register now for one of the General Information Meetings; after you have completed one of these you will be able to register for the Mandatory Training. Volunteers also must complete and submit an application, which is available on the website. If a volunteer is interested in becoming a Zone Captain, please indicate this on your application.

For more information, including a list of frequently asked questions, call Sonia Colyer at (904) 209-0752

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