Guests at Disney’s Animal Kingdom can support sea turtle conservation by participating in the Adopt-A-Nest program at Conservation Station’s Out of the Wild merchandise shop.
Here’s how the program works: During sea turtle nesting season, a team from Animal Programs surveys the beach near Disney’s Vero Beach Resort looking for new sea turtle nests. They examine a selection of the nests, and mark and numbers them for research purposes. At the end of the week, the team provides an update to the Merchandise team on the new nests, including nest number, date laid and species. The Animal Programs team later follows up on the nest once the hatchlings have emerged and collects information on the nest’s success.
Guests who participate in the Adopt-A-Nest program receive an adoption certificate with a specific nest number on it, plus a plush Squirt from Finding Nemo and a Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund (DWCF) Conservation Hero button. Guests can track their nest’s status by visiting www.disney.com/conservation Adopt-A-Nest link and look up their nest number. Each adoption is registered within a week, and Guests can expect news on their hatchlings about two months after the nest is laid.
The fee to adopt a nest is $50, with 74 percent benefiting DWCF and sea turtle conservation efforts in Florida. Out of the Wild is the only Walt Disney World theme park location that offers the Adopt-A-Nest program. The only other location that offers the program is the Island Grove Packing Company merchandise shop at Disney’s Vero Beach Resort.
Adopt a Turtle Nest at Disney’s Vero Beach Resort
Guests at Disney’s Vero Beach Resort now can donate to the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund’s sea turtle conservation efforts through the resort’s new Adopt-A-Nest Program.
The program, which launched July 5, offers Guests adoption packages for $50 that includes: a Squirt plush toy (from Finding Nemo); a Disney Worldwide Conservation Hero Button; and an adoption certificate that lists the species of turtle and location of the nest. Guests can use their certificate number to track their nest’s success and possible hatchings on DisneyConservation.com.
Proceeds from the program will benefit turtle and beach conservation efforts throughout the state of Florida.
Anne Savage, Ph.D., senior conservation biologist, Disney’s Animal Programs, explains that this program is a great way to educate resort guests while raising funds for a great conservation effort, as all the funds raised through the program will go to the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund and sea turtle conservation efforts in Florida.
“Many of our guests who visit the resort are very interested in sea turtles,” Anne said. “You can imagine how exciting it is for our guests to see a sea turtle nest and wonder how many hatchlings will make it to the ocean. Well, now they can adopt a sea turtle nest and not only learn how many hatchlings were in their nest but they also know that their contribution is helping to protect Florida’s sea turtles.”
So far the program has been a hit with Disney’s Vero Beach Resort guests.
“The Adopt-A-Nest program, offered exclusively at Disney’s Vero Beach Resort, has been a hit with our Members and Guests,” said Sheryl Koenes, general manager, Disney’s Vero Beach Resort. “The program began in early July and to date over 41 nests have been adopted. This is an exciting way for our Guests to continue learning about sea turtles, as they track their nest and become further educated on all Disney does to conserve wildlife. It creates a connection long after they have traveled home.”