Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Tara gives the Sunset Properties May 11th 2010 3:15pm beach conditions u...

Friday, September 25, 2009

Turtle Adventure Part 2

I thought my part of this turtle adventure was over with being the turtle chauffeur. This was just the beginning. I received another call later asking if I wanted to go out with the Coast Guard and help release the turtles. I jumped at the chance, this was a once in a lifetime sort of thing for me. So the next morning I met the refuge workers, with turtles in tow, at the ferry drop off. I assumed that we were taking the ferry over from Ft. Morgan to Dauphin Island and leaving on the boat from the Coast Guard station there. This was not the case!!! We went to the boat launch. There we met two of the Gentlemen from the Coast Guard at the boat launch. They handed us life vests and helmets. We put on our gear handed the turtles over to them and boarded the Coast Guard Red, zodiac.
videoThe five of us along with two turtles took off toward open water. We had to take the turtles 40 miles out, I was pretty sure we were not taking this boat and that was the case. We were speeding quickly toward a large Coast guard cutter, the Cobia. We got closer to the boat and the our chauffeurs instructed us to keep our hands and arms inside the boat. This was starting to feel a little like a roller coaster ride. I love roller coasters. The next thing I knew we started going faster and drove up into back of the boat. video The crew on board caught the boat with a huge rope and then secured us into the larger vessel. We were all helped off and the turtles were handed up on board as well. We were given a tour of the boat, and made to feel at home.
Then off we went toward the sea weed line to let the turtles go. We were able to go along on a regular cruise we this boat patrols the waters keeping our coast line safe.

We wet down the turtles a bit and gave some of the crew members a quick lesson on our flippered friends. We even had an opportunity to steer the boat a bit.
We finally reached our destination and loaded back onto the zodiac. We took the turtles out to the weed line where they have a great chance to grow and feed safely.
Both turtles were anxious to get in the water. I video taped while the two refuge interns let the turtles go. What an amazing experience to be a part of. Both turtles happily swam away right to the weed line, just were they were supposed to be. I wanted to thank the Bon Secour Refuge and the Officers and crew of the Coast Guard cutter Cobia.

Thank you, all for the great adventure.

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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Extraordinary Sunset Properties Cleaner!!!

I first met Maria Brown just before summer when she stopped by looking for a position as a cleaner. This beautiful, well spoken young woman explained that she just finished college and was hoping to live and work at the beach for the summer while she searched for a position in her field, which is marketing. We did not have an opening at the time but we soon saw Maria again when she came to work with our co-cleaning company, Ocean Sparkle.
Maria was always on time with a smile on her face. Her cheerful attitude and sweet spirit was contagious here in our office. She always did an outstanding job taking pride in her work. With summer coming to a close, one of her final jobs was to clean a house called Bella Vista. While Maria was cleaning, she found money and jewelry the owner left behind.
At that time, the owner had not realized she was missing these items.
Maria strongly showed such amazing character to return things that no one had reported missing. We work with cleaners daily and look for the cream of the crop people who will take pride in what they do and go above and beyond the call of duty. We found this with Maria!!!! We wish we could keep her on staff permanently but would not want to hold her back from bigger plans that await her beyond the beach. We will certainly miss her and feel truly blessed to have been able to call her part of our staff. The owner of Bella Vista was so impressed she asked us to give Maria $100.00. We personally want to say Thank You to Maria Brown and hope you will come back our way soon. For, you will always have a home with Sunset Properties.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Turtle Adventure Part 1

This turtle adventure started with a phone call! I received a call from Bon Secour Refuge office telling me that their plans to pick up two turtles that had been rehabilitated in Florida had been changed because of a turtle stranding on the Ft. Morgan Beaches. They asked if I could help!!!! I was absolutely thrilled to help, and drive over to Gulf Breeze and pick up these little guys. So the next afternoon I traded my car for a giant refuge truck and continued driving over the Florida line to pick up the sea turtles that were being released the next morning. I met the ladies from the Gulfarium who had helped these little guys get back in swimming condition. The turtles were packed safely for travel in their containers one was small about the size of your hand he had lost a flipper earlier this year but was doing well now. This turtle swam up to a little girl playing in the water. The other container was a surprise to me I was expecting another hand size turtle and this one was the size of a platter.
This one was also doing well after it was found swimming in circles off of the Florida coast.

Both turtles made the hour drive back to the Bon Secour Refuge Office where the wildlife biologist and one of the wonderful interns, made sure the radio tag was working and they turtles were doing well after the drive. Everyone was doing well and feeling good we got a short turtle biology lesson and they let these guys rest for a bit before their journey out to sea the next day. I was completely honored to be a part of this release effort even if it was just driving a truck.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Take a Breakaway!!!!!!!!

Breakaway, our newest gulf side home is ready for you to come down and spend some time away from it all at the beach. This family friendly 5 bedroom 3 bath home sleeps up to 12. This home also allows small dogs. This is great for all of our four legged friends, who really want to come to beach with their family. Breakaway has two bedrooms that look toward the beach, you also have a little bit of a view from the kitchen. This is a third tier home, that is less than a 5 minute walk to the water. Breakaway is located in the Dunes Community, the last little hideaway on the island. The Dunes Community sits right next to part of the Bon Secour Wildlife Refuge. This means you have 2 miles of beach to explore down to the very end of the island.

Breakaway has 3 bedrooms upstairs, the master with a king bed over looks the Gulf, along with a second bedroom with a queen bed. The third bedroom upstairs has a set of twin beds. The two bedrooms downstairs rooms both have queen beds. This home also has a sleeper sofa for any extra people you may want to bring along. There are two balconies one off of the main level and one off of the master bedroom and main hall upstairs that allow you to relax outdoors overlooking the gulf. This great home is just waiting for you and your family to come down and have fun. Give us a call to book Breakaway today!!!

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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Turtle Season at the Beach

It's Turtle Season again and those Mama Turtles have been busy laying nests this year. So far we have 20 nests, just on Ft. Morgan beaches alone. Ft. Morgan Beaches consists of about 13 miles of beach and they are patrolled each morning on an ATV by a refuge worker and 2 volunteers from the Share the Beach program. The patrol is looking for signs of a mother turtle and possible nests. These signs are pretty easy to spot most of the time. A turtles tracks look like a four wheeler, or a tractor drove out of the water, made a loop, and went right back in the water. If there is a nest she leaves tell tale signs of that too!!! The volunteers and the refuge workers are trained to spot these signs quickly, and start looking for eggs. Sometimes the workers and volunteers have to move the eggs back a little further from the water. They do this because the mother turtles laid the eggs in a place that will be covered by water if we get high water and the eggs will drown. The Alabama beaches are very important to the turtle population because it is considered a northern beach to the turtle territory. The gender of a turtle depends on the temperature of the sand they are laid in. Our sand is a bit cooler so we are more likely to produce males. A Mother Loggerhead Turtle can lay up to 190 round white eggs at a time and she can do this up to three times in a year. These eggs look just like ping pong balls except the shells are leathery. I have included a couple of photos donated by Mr. Dave Record a visitor to our area. This is a mother Kemp's Ridley preparing to nest. We have Loggerhead, and Kemp's Ridley Turtles nests primarly on our beaches. Thank you Mr. Record for your help.

You should never touch sea turtle eggs, hatchlings or adult turtles because they are protected animals, and it could be dangerous to your health and theirs. If you come up on a nest or an animal, wait by it and get a friend to call 1-866-SEA TURTLE they will know how to help.
I have been truly blessed to help find two nests this year, I have included a couple of pictures below of the eggs so you can see what they look like. The babies will hatch out about 55 days after they are laid. I know I will be there to see my nests hatch out. I can't wait!!!! Our Ft. Morgan nests start hatching next week, and everyone is very excited. Who knows you may get to see this exciting event on your trip to the beach.
Did you know the less you leave on the beach the easier it is for the mamas to lay eggs and get back to the water before daylight. Because of things on the beach we have had several mothers get lost and go toward streets instead of the water and get trapped behind chairs and under tents. Make room for our turtles on the beach, pull your things away from the water, or take them back completely, give these rare creatures all the space they need.


Saturday, June 6, 2009

A Massage at the Beach!!!

We want to welcome Adam and Rachael Austin to the Sunset Properties Family. Adam and Rachael are massage therapists whose dream was to work on the beach. Rachael recently came down to our office and every member of the staff received a massage from the boss. HAVE I MENTIONED I HAVE THE BEST JOB EVER????
Each of us walked out of our massage completely relaxed and ready to do NO work at all for the rest of the day. Rachael did an amazing job working on each individuals problems and sore spots.
Rachael and Adam specialize in couples massages, and Rachael will be available Tuesday mornings for individual massages on the beach or in the condo. The massages range from $25 for an individual for 15 minutes to $75 for an hour. Couples start at $180.00 for an hour massage. All services are licensed and professional.
The Austin's also do set up meals to go along with the couples massages. There are all sorts of pricing and packages to fit all budgets.
Gwen our housekeeping supervisor said, "having a massage with Rachael would be a necessity to a relaxing vacation!" Brenda said, "it was simply AWESOME!" Becky wants, "have one every week!" I absolutely agree with everything they said and can't wait until Rachael comes back for staff massage day again!!!!!!!!!