A 49-year-old Tequesta man, Glenn Shaw, was arrested Friday for the taking and possession of loggerhead sea turtle eggs, a third-degree felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a fine up to $5,000, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
Earlier in the week, the agency received information from FWC biologists on a possible suspect stealing sea turtle eggs from a beach behind a home on Jupiter Island.
During the week, officers increased patrols in the area to monitor for illegal activity. Shaw was observed Friday evening taking eggs from a female loggerhead sea turtle as she was laying them.
“We’d like to thank FWC biologists for keeping a close eye out and the US Fish and Wildlife Service for their assistance with this case. Protecting Florida’s natural resources is something we take seriously, and we’re thankful that this individual was prevented from doing further harm to this imperiled species,” FWC Captain Jeff Ardelean said in a statement.
Shaw was found to be in possession of 107 eggs in total. He was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail. The US Fish and Wildlife Service assisted FWC officers in the arrest. 15 of the eggs were kept as evidence and for DNA testing, and FWC biologists re-buried the remaining 92 eggs. A motive for the crime is still being determined. Shaw is currently being held on $3,000 bond.
“Remember to protect wildlife this Independence Day and maintain a safe distance – beachfront fireworks may disturb nesting shorebirds and might even cause sea turtles not to lay their eggs,” FWC said in a Facebook post.