SARASOTA, Fla. (WFLA) – Mote Marine Laboratory has launched an ambitious new study after making some promising finds this turtle nesting season.

The green turtle is an endangered species but over the past few years, researchers have seen record numbers of their nests. Scientists don’t know why green turtle numbers have suddenly started climbing, and they don’t know where they’re coming from.

This summer, Mote Marine researchers received permits from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to place satellite trackers on seven nesting green turtles.

“Our goals are to try and figure out where these turtles come from and also how they got there and then how may nests they lay in a season,” Senior Biologists Kristen Mazzarella said. “So all these things are helpful for the conservation of green turtles, especially the green turtles that are new to the Gulf of Mexico.”

Mote Marine researchers say the satellite trackers are expected to transmit data for the next two years.

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