The Georgia Sea Turtle Center designed for sea turtle rehabilitation, research and education on sea turtles opened in June 2007 on Jekyll Island, Georgia.
The Center is very much like an emergency room and rehabilitation center for injured and sick turtles in addition to scientific research. You get to see the various patients that are in rehabilitation at the Sea Turtle Center and find out about their injuries and illnesses.
Freshwater turtles (like you find in ponds or in pet stores) have flat feet and webbed toes for swimming while a sea turtle's feet are flippers used for swimming. A freshwater turtle can move its neck into an S shape to put its head inside its shell while a sea turtle cannot.
One of the things you learn at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center is the development of sea turtles from eggs all the way through adulthood. Sea turtles dig in the sand and bury their eggs. Several months later, the baby turtles crack out of the shell and stays hidden in the sand for several nights until all of the turtles are out of their shells. About 100 turtles start digging for the surface and emerge in the dark on the beach and race toward the sea. Many become victims to seabirds, crabs and other predators. Sometimes they head in the wrong direction toward the lights buildings behind dunes because they think they are headed into the light of the ocean's horizon.
During certain times of the year, you can see the hatchings on beach walks sponsored by the Georgia Sea Turtle Center. Open daily from 10 - 6, visit the Georgia Sea Turtle Center.