Posted by Debra Worley - email
OCEAN ISLE BEACH, NC (WECT) - 83 baby turtles were stolen from their nest on Ocean Isle Beach earlier this month, now authorities are offering a reward for information.
Sea turtle coordinator Gloria Hillenburg said volunteers discovered a vandalized nest with the recently hatched turtles gone.
Hillenburg believes the people who took the reptiles plan to sell them, but the turtles are not old enough to survive outside their nest and will die outside the ocean.
The vandalism happened the morning of Aug. 6 between 7:00 and 9:30.
A federal reward of $5,000 is being offered for any information that leads to the arrest of the person(s) responsible for taking the turtles from the nest.
Taking the turtle eggs is a violation of the Federal Endangered Species Act and persons involved could face a fine of $100,000 or spend up to a year in prison.