Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Witnessing a Miracle of Nature

     Mark and I (and Magnolia the Magnificent, our Shih-tzu) were privileged to witness a miracle of nature this past weekend--newly hatched baby sea turtles scurrying to the ocean. Since I seldom go to the beach without a camera, usually for taking painting reference photos, I was able to snap a few pictures, including my size seven, medium foot in some to show how small these babies are. After a few photos, I was happier to simply watch in awe as the turtles scampered by.

     Sea turtles often hatch at night, when it is safer from most predators, but these emerged before 8 p.m. We are thankful they did, because being present was a once-in-a-lifetime thrill. Onlookers waved birds away as dozens--perhaps almost 100--little turtles headed straight for the ocean. They were quite fast, and overcame most obstacles. Even a footprint in the sand can create a mound more like a huge dune for these little ones, but they steadfastly kept on going--over, around, whatever it took. If they flipped over, they waved their legs awhile, but usually needed to extend their long necks and flip themselves right side up with their heads. Although we are not supposed to touch them, some onlookers couldn't resist "helping" the turtles who seemed to be in trouble. It is particularly amazing that they knew which way to go from their nest well above the high tide line because it was still light enough out that their usual guidance system of going toward to lightest area (at night, the glow of the water) would have been weak.

      If you would like to know more about these amazing animals, now a protected species given the steep drop in their numbers, here is one interesting web site. I am awed and thankful to have been present to see in person what we had only watched on TV before. That Saturday evening is now in my memory bank along with other remarkable scenes I can call to mind when I need a lift--or anytime I begin to recall the multitude of experiences of nature I am thankful for.
Question of the day: What unique, remarkable experiences of nature live in your thankfulness memory bank?


  1. wow! that's incredible! it's a miracle of nature indeed and you are blessed to have witnessed it with your naked eyes up close. i remember a chick being hatched from its egg when i was a kid.
    thanks for the greetings Mary! it is always a delight to see you in my blog. :)

  2. Oh this would have had me in tears at the awe of it all! I'd probably have wanted to help the ones that turned over too. By the way, Mary, you have nice feet and in relating back to your last response to me, they belie any sort of age except young. I always thought I had ok feet but I'm noticing that they are starting to show my age. Ah well.

    As to your question...It is undoubtedly first and foremost the birth of my own children. I knew immediately that there really is God once I had them. That faith has never wavered. Beyond their births and the births of my grandchildren, all of nature leaves me in awe. From the moulds that grow on trees to the trees broken by lightening, blight, or even plain dryness (as is happening here a bit), to furry caterpillars and screeching birds, to the huge ground hog or whatever it is that likes to lay out in the middle of the field and watch the world go by...I find it all just amazing.

  3. Yes, Cher, we are blessed to have witnessed this miracle. It was so unexpected that it seemed especially magical.

    Sherry, your answer is pure poetry. Love the way you express yourself, especially about nature. Interesting--when I asked the question, my first thought also was the birth of our children. New life is precious and God-given, I believe.

  4. Wow! That is really something. I've read how many sea turtles are highly endangered. Hope the little guys and gals make it....

  5. Wonderful photos Mary! I get a thrill just seeing the roped off nests and checking the tentative hatching dates. How wonderful that you were there to witness this wonder of nature! Soooo glad you had your camera!

  6. Hey, TB--great to hear from you! Yes, I hope they make it, too. Given the number of babies, I am sure some are still out there, swimming and growing.

    Thank you, Rosemary. Yes, it would have been very frustrating to see this without the camera; it is a miracle worth recording. Hope you have this magical opportunity someday.