For Immediate Release, April 28, 2021

Contact: Joanie Steinhaus,, 512-417-7741

First Kemp’s Ridley Nests on Texas Coast Marks Late Start to 2021 Season

GALVESTON, Texas — The Kemp’s ridley sea turtle nesting season officially began today on the Texas coast, with the first two nests documented on North Padre Island. Turtle Island Restoration Network asks that visitors and residents call (866) TURTLE-5 (866-887-8535) should they encounter a sea turtle on the beach.

“Every Texan can ensure this endangered species survives and returns to our beaches by reporting nesting turtles and their eggs to the Texas sea turtle hotline,” said Joanie Steinhaus, gulf program director for Turtle Island Restoration Network.

If you encounter a nesting sea turtle on the beach, please stay back so that you do not frighten her. Immediately report her to a passing turtle patroller or by calling (866) TURTLE-5. Do not disturb or handle nesting turtles, eggs, or hatchlings. Stay behind the turtle and out of its line of sight. Ensure there is a clear path towards the sea and scare away potential predators.

Kemp’s ridley sea turtles are the most critically endangered species of sea turtle in the world. Federal and state agencies excavate nests and transport eggs to protected incubation to increase survival rate. Because Kemp’s ridleys are a federally protected endangered species, disturbing their nests can lead to penalties.

Last nesting season 262 Kemp’s ridley sea turtle nests were confirmed on the Texas coast. 

Daily nesting numbers can be found on Turtle Island Restoration Network’s website.

Turtle Island Restoration Network has sponsored the sea turtle hotline for the Texas coast for more than a decade, and continues to raise awareness of the need to report any nesting, injured or deceased sea turtle to the hotline along the entire Texas coast.

Turtle Island Restoration Network is a nonprofit organization that works to protect and restore populations of endangered sea turtles and marine biodiversity on the Texas coast and throughout the Gulf of Mexico. Learn more at