Thursday, July 15, 2010

Wrightsville Beach Sea Turtle Project Trashy Talking Turtlers Week 6

July 5 - July 11 (Fireworks)

Helloooo Trashy Talking Turtlers,
Here are your numbers:
Week 6:
We picked up trash in 16 of the 42 zones (38 percent)
Zone 0 = 5.5 bags
Zone 1 = 12.5 bags
Zone 2 = 8.25 bags
Zone 3 = 3 bags
Zone 4 = 6 bags
Zone 5 = 4 bags
Total for Week 6 = 39.25 bags

Grand Total since June 1 = 245.50 bags! (and as always this does not include all of the beach towels, chairs, boogie boards, and other random items that are too large for the bags.)

Trash vs. Treasure
Anne Marie went shopping in Zone 0 and found four shirts, a pair of shorts, pant legs (oddly enough just the pant legs . . . not the full pants!), a beach hat, beach towel, cooler, used firecrackers--not a bad shopping day at all!
Dick and Linda had their daughter and grandchildren join them to pick up 8.5 bags of trash including a $1 bill a quarter and a pair of sunglasses.
Susan found a nice pair of sneakers in Zone 3. She gave them to someone who appeared to be homeless and he followed her the rest of the way and professed his love for her. Although Susan admits this was a bit awkward, she felt he was quite harmless. Everyone says that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach, but maybe you just need to give him a pair of gently used shoes!
Renee met two little boys who were here on vacation who spent their mornings cleaning up WB—you have to love the next generation, they just may change the world!
In general, most of you are continuing to collect trash that is made from plastic, cigarette butts and fireworks remnants. Several of you commented about how many cigarette butts you saw on the beach this week.
And, there is still dog poop being found in Zone 4.

Fireworks and the Blockade Runner and Zone 4
I like fireworks on the 4th of July. I usually go downtown every year to see them. I think Wilmington has an excellent display and it has become part of my tradition to celebrate Independence Day.
However, I don't like firework remnants on the beach. John and I monitor Zone 4 every Wednesday and for the past three weeks, we have found an exceptionally large amount of firework remnants throughout the zone, but heavily concentrated in front of the Blockade Runner. I always walk up to the volley ball court in front of the Blockade Runner because someone usually leaves plastic straws, cup lids or plastic bottles there. However, for the past three weeks, this area is completely littered with fireworks; so much so, that I can't pick it all up in the amount of time I have to monitor the beach before we go to work.
This week (which is actually Week 7, but I thought I would include it here anyway) was especially horrible. I actually gave up and declared that there was no way to collect it all and began muddling over how I should approach this problem and how to be diplomatic. Fortunately, I did not have to muddle long because I saw Shannon Slocum, WB Park Ranger, driving down the beach. I flagged him down and voiced my concerns. He did drive over to the volley ball court and checked out the scene and stated he would mention this to the Blockade Runner staff. I hope this helps because I was very disheartened yesterday and it was hard to feel positive about the situation.
Some people may wonder what the big deal is; after all, it is just fireworks. Well, besides being disruptive if turtles do nest on the beach, fireworks’ casings contains plastic and sometimes the whole casing is plastic! Not only is the casing made of plastic, but even the cardboard casings have compartments at the base of the shell that contain materials to propel the fireworks, and these compartments contain plastic parts as well. I cannot tell you how many of those exploded plastic casings I have picked up in Zone 4 and there are many, many more left to be picked up or to be washed out to sea! I really hope that the Blockade Runner will discourage their guests from using fireworks; and I also hope they will help clean up this area of the beach.
By the way, as we all know, it is illegal to have fireworks in N.C.; so there is room for enforcement.

There continue to be very large holes on the beach. As we have mentioned before, this is dangerous to humans as well as sea turtles. Although WB has ordinances about filling in holes before leaving the beach, this ordinance seems to be greatly ignored. Oak Island just passed an ordinance this week about filling in holes before leaving the beach. WECT TV also ran a segment this week proclaiming holes to be among the five most dangerous things at the beach since many people do not see them as they are walking along the beach and often become injured as they stumble into the holes. Please be careful out there and watch your step.

Events at WB
The Reef/Sweetwater Pro-Am Surf Fest contest will be held at WB this weekend. If you like surfing this is a great event to attend. During the event, at 10:30 on Saturday, there will be a Kids Beach Sweep. Again, you have to love the next generation because they just may change the world!

Sea Turtles and Boomballatti's
If you have not visited Boomballatti's Ice Cream Shop located in The Forum, you are really missing out on yummy homemade ice cream. The shop is locally owned and operated by Kevin and Michelle who happen to love the sea turtles! They have even allowed WBSTP to have a donation box in their shop which has helped us raise quite a bit of money for education and rescue purposes.
If you like ice cream, you will love Boomballatti's and you just may find Kevin sporting a WBSTP hat!
Thank you Boomballatti's!

Thank you Trashy Talking Turtlers for making our Planet a better place!
Happy Turtling!

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