POLICE: MBPD arrested a woman this morning seen “jabbing at a sea turtle nest and stomping all over the nest.” Thankfully, it appears the eggs were not damaged.
Sea turtle nesting season runs from May 1 through October 31. #MBShareTheShore
— Miami Beach Police (@MiamiBeachPD) June 15, 2019
Yaqun Lu, 41, faces a felony charge of molesting marine turtles or eggs after officers on Saturday saw her “stomping” around the nesting area. Yellow tape and sticks closed off the area from the public at Miami Beach, but Lu allegedly took one of the wooden sticks to disturb a nest.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission determined none of the eggs were damaged, local station WPLG reported.
Three protected species of sea turtles – the loggerhead, green and leatherback – nest at Miami Beach from April to early November, according to the city’s website.
The U.S. Endangered Species Act gives all sea turtle species found in the U.S. federal protection. Florida laws also make it illegal to harm sea turtles, their nests or hatchlings.
Lu is a Chinese citizen who listed a home address in Hudsonville, Michigan. The report says authorities notified the Chinese consulate in Houston about the arrest. Online records showed no attorney listed for her.