Panama City Beach- High winds and rough surf across Panama City Beach Monday as Tropical Storm Debby continued churning in the Gulf.
The dangerous conditions may have been a perfect recipe for surfers, but it's been a much more serious situation for one local wildlife group. The Panama City Beach Turtle Watch Group has been working around the clock trying to protect more than 20 nests across the 18 mile stretch of beaches.
"It's sad because it's been a banner year for us. The waves come in, they expose the eggs, the eggs roll out onto the surf," said volunteer Lynda Yates.
Over the past 48 hours volunteers have managed to rescue and relocate more than 80 eggs.
"Using tourists literally standing at the edge of the water catching them as they were coming down," said Yates.
But Sunday, they were too late for some.
"It's fairly serious, we've lost four nests," said Yates.
They're keeping an especially close eye on one particular nest. That's because it's from a leatherback turtle.
"Activity and lights disturb them. They tend not to nest in those areas, so we're very lucky, this is our very first leatherback," said Yates.
The total number of known nests in Panama City Beach is down to 19, turtle watch members are hoping the weather calms down before more are wiped out to sea.
"It's one of the reasons they're so endangered, fighting all kinds of elements including nature," said Yates.
Volunteers said they'll continue working around the clock until conditions improve, and it could be several more days before the rough water subsides.