Every summer, hundreds of sea turtles come to the beaches of Southwest Florida to lay their eggs. These turtles are an essential part of the marine ecosystem, and their numbers have been declining in recent years.
One of the biggest threats to these turtles is artificial light from homes and businesses along the gulf coast. The light can confuse sea turtles and prevent them from finding their way to the ocean.
Fortunately, there is a simple solution: sea turtle window tinting. This tinting blocks artificial light, making it easier for turtles to find their way to the water. As a result, turtle glass window tinting is a simple and effective way to help protect these creatures.
Treacherous Journey To The Beach
Each year, female sea turtles travel from their feeding grounds to the beaches where they were born. These turtles can swim thousands of miles to reach their destination.
The journey is long and dangerous, and many turtles never make it back to shore. Along the way, they face predators, pollution, and other threats. One of the biggest dangers they face is artificial light.
When turtles come to shore to lay their eggs, they use the light of the moon to guide them.
However, artificial lighting from homes and businesses can confuse turtles and prevent them from finding their way back to the ocean.
What Is Turtle Glass?
Turtle glass is a window film that helps protect sea turtles by blocking out artificial light. This tinting makes it easier for turtles to find their way to the water, and it can help prevent them from being confused.
By controlling beachfront lighting and following the Florida Model lighting ordinance for Marine Turtle protection, we can work together to preserve the nesting habitats and the turtle population during the turtle hatching season.
When Is The Turtle Nesting Season?
The nesting season for turtles is from May 1 through October 31.
Why Is Artificial Light A Problem For Marine Turtles?
Artificial light is a problem for sea turtles because artificial lighting confuses them and prevents them from finding their way to the water. In some cases, turtles will even crawl towards the light, only to end up in a dangerous situation.
The turtle code in Florida helps protect the baby sea turtles during all phases of their life. Including when the eggs hatch and they must safely make their way back to the crashing ocean waves.
In an ideal scenario, the beach is pitch black, and they aren't confused about the artificial light versus the moonlight. Following instincts to go to the light, turtles get confused easily.
Newly hatched sea turtles crawl towards the artificial lighting, only to end up on a busy road or in someone’s backyard. It can be fatal for the baby sea turtles, as they are often hit by cars or attacked by predators.
Window Tint Is An Easy Solution
Turtle window tinting is an effective way to prevent this from happening. By blocking artificial lights, turtle glass window tinting makes it easier for the wayward sea turtles to find their way to the water during the sea turtle nesting season.
It is a simple and effective way to help protect wayward sea turtles. With so many challenges they face on our Florida gulf coast, let's make sure that the marine turtles are not affected by the light projection of our lights. Let’s ensure they can use the moonlight to guide them down to the ocean after hatching.
All Lights Out At Dark
Florida has implemented some regulations to safeguard marine turtles and help the young sea turtles reach the ocean safely.
The Model Lighting Ordinance for Marine Turtle Protection, enforced by the Florida Department of Natural Resources, requires residential and business owners along the coast to follow the sea turtle protection code.
After passing the ordinance in 1993, the law restricted lighting to preserve marine turtle habitats. Over 30 counties are in this legislation, which also applies to exterior fixtures, floodlights, and spotlighting.
It also includes beach bonfires, flash photography, and the prohibition of vehicles on the beach at night. All of these can confuse baby turtles and prevent them from using the light of the moon to guide them back to the ocean.
How You Can Help
Some counties require that outdoor lighting in your southwest Florida home is concealed from the beach between dusk and dawn (9 pm to 7 am) during the sea turtle nesting season and when the baby sea turtles hatch.
If they are coastal facing or perpendicular walls, the exterior fixtures must diffuse light coming out by being completely shielded, downward-facing, and fully cut-off light fixtures.
If you're building or renovating in coastal areas, be aware of the turtle codes. For the lights to be considered "beach-friendly," the lights must be directed downward. If the lights can be viewed from the beach, they should be completely cut off.
To protect the beach, install motion detectors, use low-wattage bulbs and amber (LED) lights, consider planting dense vegetation to protect the beach or purchase fixtures that emit little to no visible light transmission.
Save The Turtles
While these ordinances are in place, they aren’t always adhered to by everyone. Therefore it is essential to install turtle glass window film. By tinting the windows of coastal homes and businesses, we can help reduce the amount of artificial light that reaches the beach.
Using window tint will help create a safer environment for marine turtles and their hatchlings using natural resources adopted to look after them. Tinting your windows helps year-round and avoids violating any laws and turtle codes designed to save the turtles.
You should check your county's regulations to ensure that you fulfill all criteria, as they may differ.
A Win For Everyone
Turtle window tinting is beneficial for turtles and people. The tinted glass also blocks dangerous ultraviolet rays and excessive heat, reducing your energy bill.
Also, window tinting can increase your privacy, reduce glare and reduce the heat input from the sun. If you live in a beachfront home, you may not want people to be able to see inside. Turtle glass window tinting can help you achieve this by blocking out light.
New windows will need to have their glass treated with window films that meet all the laws and codes to reduce light projection to the beach.
What Color Are The Turtle Glass Window Films?
The color of the turtle glass window film is a green or grey shade, and it is dark enough to block out all artificial light and meets the 45% VLT required by law. In some cases, a darker tint of less than 45% is required in some counties.
Window glass in homes, businesses, and condos must be treated with tinted glass with a low VLT (visible light transmittance) per the Florida Model Lighting Ordinance.
The shades of window tint selected help to reduce light projection and the visible spectrum of light that comes from all our standard light sources, including but not limited to streetlights, driveway lights, landscape lights, and home/business windows.
Time To Get Tinted
With new construction and new windows being installed, it's a good idea to make sure that builders and homeowners follow all the laws of their county. Condos are a great example of where tinted glass units can make a difference.
Many beachfront condos are built with walls of all glass windows and doors. They are great for the view and for adding natural light to your unit, but they can be very dangerous to turtles.
Installing turtle glass window film is a quick and easy solution. It will help reduce the light transmittance value and reduces the visible light spectrum for the safety of the turtles during nesting season and the overall nesting habitats of marine animals.
Naples Tint Company specializes in installing turtle glass window film in any home that needs to meet the turtle code. We serve Collier and Lee county cities of Naples, Bonita, Marco Island, Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, and surrounding areas. Contact us for more information on how we can help you select the best turtle glass window film.