Beach Renourishment Pushed Into Turtle Nesting Season


The emergency sand berm project on Fort Myers Beach, funded by FEMA and the state, which was scheduled to start this week, will not begin until May. Turtle nesting seasons begins in May. 90,000 yards of sand will be trucked onto Fort Myers Beach as part of this project. It’s unknown how this will impact the turtles.

The emergency berm will replace some of the sand lost during Hurricane Ian. It will provide minimal protection if a major storm came through, however, it will be 100 percent funded by FEMA and the State of Florida.

The delay, according to interim Town Manager Keith Wilkins has to due with the funding from FEMA. “FEMA calls it “obligating” the funds.  Which means it goes through a federal agency clearinghouse (Tribes, Fish and Wildlife, NOAA, EPA) for approval.  Our berm funds have not yet been obligated and are currently with the Tribal group until March 21.  After that it is expected to take another six weeks.”

The project must be started 6 months or less after the storm so delaying it until after turtle season is not an option. The town would lose the funding.


  1. 90,000 yards of sand…FROM WHERE?
    FMB sand, and the sand pumped from 2 miles off the island is beautiful. Soft, white, fine sand of FMB vs gray course sand of, say Venice, or the course sand of the East Coast? I appreciate that FEMA is paying for it but our last dune did nothing for us at the north end. We’d never had water higher than 6” ever before. We can’t stop nature. I really don’t want to become NC with huge dunes and wooden walkovers…or I’d move there. We’ve been here since 1976 when the shoreline was a matter of a few yards from our pool. The previous “re”nourishments created a very wide beach of at least a 100 yards from our pool. Distance, not height.
    No 15’ dune!

  2. 90,000 yards of sand will be trucked onto Fort Myers Beach…. where exactly on the island is the sand going?

  3. The town makes up or ignores the science to fit the funding whether or not the facts support it. Not sure if the berm system will affect turtles or provide much storm protection but they want the money anyway whether it’s going to affect the turtles or not yet they know for certain that a little white light in your kitchen is going to cause turtles to get disoriented and end up in storm drains because it’s been a huge problem for years probably have lost millions of turtles due to it NOT! Junk science for the sake of stealing taxpayers money when this money should be going to the tax paying property owners that were affected by Ian. The beach will recovery naturally just like it does after all hurricanes.

  4. FMB is slowly coming back to life and it’s wonderful to see. Beach Renourishment is more than welcome and also necessary.
    Thank you everyone for all of your efforts it is more than appreciated.

  5. The turtles are smarter than we think. They will find a way to any sand anywhere to nest in since they have been displaced by Ian. Tourism, jobs, and people are more important. Not to mention quality of life for FMB citizens. The turtles will be fine.


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