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2016 Oktoberfest Tampa!

Hurricane Matthew destroyed 800 sea turtle nests, scientists say

About 800 sea turtle nests along northern Palm Beach County beaches were lost to Hurricane Matthew, experts at the Loggerhead Marinelife Center said.

But during a record-breaking year for nesting, the impact is minimal, experts said.

>> Read more trending stories

Nearly 15,000 nests already have hatched along the 10-mile stretch of beach monitored by Loggerhead. That represents a 92 percent success rate for the season.

About 1,250 nests — mostly green turtle nests — weren’t hatched before the hurricane, meaning 63 percent of them were lost to the storm, according to Sarah Hirsch, the center’s data manager.

About 450 nests are still incubating, she said.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission regulations bar officials from moving nests, even with the threat of a hurricane, because the eggs are prone to movement-induced mortality.

Winds have minimal impact on the nests, as the eggs are buried under the sand. However, storm surge, and subsequent beach erosion, can leave nests exposed and lower their chances of surviving.

Sea eggs can be seen along the beaches in Matthew’s aftermath, but most of those Hirsch has seen already have hatched or weren’t viable when the storm exposed them.

Mom, special needs son turned away from shelter during storm

The mother of a man with special needs said she and they were turned away from a Volusia County hurricane shelter and were forced to ride out Hurricane Matthew in their home.

When the health of Susan Weir’s son suddenly deteriorated, he had to be hospitalized in the middle of the storm.

Weir had to wait hours for the storm to clear enough to enable her to drive her son to Halifax Health.

Her son was admitted and survived, but her fear was that it could've played out very differently.

>> Read more trending stories  

Weir was frantically trying to find a shelter on Thursday that would take in her 28-year-old son, Andrew, who has a traumatic brain injury.

"He can't be without electricity," said Weir.

On Thursday, Weir, said she packed their things and took Andrew to one of Volusia's County's designated special-needs shelters.

But she was refused and was told to “take him to the hospital."

Weir said hospitals wouldn't take him because there was no medical emergency.

But Andrew's body can't regulate its temperature, so he needs air conditioning and electricity for an essential pump.

>> Read the latest on Hurricane Matthew 

Weir knew if the power went out, it could be a matter of life or death.

"So I guess if they don't let us in there, we're just going to stay here and hope we don't lose power," said Weir.

They lost power during the storm and Andrew became ill.

"That's what was the danger was that we had no place to go and nothing we could do," she said.

Weir said she waited out the storm for hours until she could drive Andrew to Halifax Health, where he was admitted.

Weir said she saw other people turned away from the shelter and hospital because they didn't meet certain criteria.

Now, she wants to talk to emergency management officials about closing the shelter gap before it kills someone.

"Just pray they can work out these things before next time so that Andrew or anybody else doesn't have to go through it again," said Weir.

Volusia County said it does not accept special-needs patients who require care around the clock.

Weir's home-care provider said they tried to coordinate with hospitals, but they were denied.

Halifax Health did not release a statement.

'No donuts went missing' – Jacksonville Sheriff's Office posts some levity after the storm

With all the bad news that Florida has experienced in the past few days, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office decided to lighten the mood on Facebook over the weekend.

In a post that has gone viral with 7,000 likes and more than 1,000 shares, the office poked fun at itself with a photo of a deputy’s cruiser in front of a Dunkin’ Donuts after Hurricane Matthew.

>> Read more trending stories  

“JSO Officer Crnolic made sure that the Dunkin’ Donuts located at Beach Boulevard and Hodges Boulevard was secure,” the office’s post said. “We confirmed, no donuts went missing.”

Residents seemed to appreciate the post, thanking the JSO for its lighthearted nature.

“Thank you for the humorous post after the past few day,” one person wrote.

“So funny and needed right now,” another person posted. “Wonderful to see so many of JSO’s finest have a sense of humor and are willing to poke fun at themselves.”

“Nice to see that you all still have your humor intact after the stress of the last few days,” yet another person wrote. “JSO rocks!”

“We have to,” the JSO responded. “Stay safe.”

JSO Officer Crnolic made sure that the Dunkin' Donuts located at Beach Blvd and Hodges Blvd was secure.  We confirmed, no donuts went missing.  𾆡🏻𾮗🏼𾥸Posted by Jacksonville Sheriff's Office on Saturday, October 8, 2016

Lightning Hockey Puck Drop Contest

Text DOVE to 61873 starting Monday, October 10th through Sunday, October 16th to win 2 tickets to the Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Florida Panthers game on Tuesday, October 18th @ 7:30PM and an exclusive pre-game experience. The Tampa Bay Lightning will select a winner out of the entries on Monday, 10/17/2016 by 12pm to notify. (Click here for rules)

Radar shows birds trapped in the eye of Hurricane Matthew

A huge flock of birds is trapped in the eye of Hurricane Matthew.

Glenn Burns, chief meteorologist with WSB-TV in Atlanta, pointed out a small green dot in the eye of Hurricane Matthew on weather radar Thursday.

>> Read more trending stories  

“Here is the eye of the storm and inside the eye the air is calm and the sky is clear,” said Burns. “Those are seagulls and birds that are flying inside the eye of the storm trying to escape the strongest part of the storm which is in the north and north-eastern center of it.”

Birds riding along in the eye of a hurricane is a common phenomena, according to Kenn Kaufman, Birding expert and field editor for Audubon. He says they likely try to stay in the eye of the storm, where it’s calm.

>> Read the latest on Hurricane Matthew 

“When the storm reaches land, some of them may start fighting the winds. Others may go with it and travel with the eye until the hurricane dissipates,” said Kaufman. “The majority of seabirds, if they are not too weakened from having flown for so long without food, will probably find their way back to shore quickly. They have great powers of navigation.”

Hurricane Matthew: St. Augustine streets flooded, people stranded

St. Augustine was among the hardest-hit areas of Northeast Florida as Hurricane Matthew arrived Friday. 

Video from WJAX reporter Russell Colburn showed water rising in downtown streets. People were seen trapped at the Casablanca Inn. 

>>Hurricane Matthew: Live updates

St. Johns County officials quickly moved to close all bridges in St. Johns County earlier in the day. 

>> Read the latest on Hurricane Matthew 



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