Turtle Death Halts Second FL Beach Restoration Project

Wed July 19, 2006 - Southeast Edition

NAVARRE BEACH, FL (AP) A dune restoration project in the Florida Panhandle has been shut down until Oct. 1 after the death of another rare turtle, officials said.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers made the decision July 5, according to Peter Ravella, of Coastal Technology Corp., which is overseeing the project for Santa Rosa County.

The juvenile loggerhead sea turtle was killed early July 1.

The project, which aims to add 3.4 million cu. yds. (2.6 million cu m) and sand along 3.7 mi. (6 km) of beach on the island, has been shut down twice before.

Crews found fragments of a loggerhead sea turtle shell in the screen of a dredge June 17. A young Kemp’s ridley turtle was killed by the same dredge in March.

Work, which started in late March, was approximately 72 percent complete at the time of the most recent shutdown.

A similar project in the Destin area has been suspended until Oct. 1 after dredging killed four sea turtles.