TALLAHASSEE (CBS4) – The battle to save endangered sea turtles in the state of Florida is paying off.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reports a record high annual nest count for green turtles in 2011 and a near record for leatherback turtle nests. Both species are on the federal endangered list.

However, loggerheads did not increase in numbers this year, with the nest count close to average for the previous five years. Loggerheads are the species that nests most commonly in Florida.

Officials attributed the gains partially to major conservation efforts over the past few decades.

Nest counts are performed each year to measure seasonal sea turtle nesting and to allow for accurate comparisons of beaches and years. The counts take place on 255 miles of selected beaches along both the Atlantic and Gulf coasts.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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