"The trip of little turtles to the water begins when they break out of the nest. This may be located on unobstructed beach sloping evenly toward a sea that lies in full view. More likely, however, the location of the nest gives the hatchlings a first view of nothing but sand and sky. In either case the little turtles have got to find the water, and unless they are eaten they nearly always do. After a few short false starts they begin to crawl, and almost at once swing into the general direction of the sea. They move around, through, or over obstacles, and go up or down slopes with unswerving “confidence” in whatever sign it is that marks the ocean for them. They can find it by daylight or at night, in all weather except heavy rain, with the sun or moon hidden, or shining brightly in any part of the sky. The main guiding cue is not yet wholly understood. Although sea finding quite evidently involves light, it is certainly not a simple tendency to move toward light. Otherwise the hatchlings would be expected to go directly toward the sun or moon, which they only rarely do. On the other hand, they sometimes do get distracted by an artificial light source, or even by some especially intense patch of natural light such as a hole in cloud cover provides. Most often, however, they move confidently toward the water, no matter what the condition of the sky may be. After the soft dune sand is left behind and the turtles reach the hard tidal flat, the main guidepost can be supplemented by local signs. Besides the fundamental light-response, a chain of other signs and responses may affect the course or speed of the progress to water. White breakers in strong moonlight and fiery surf on phosphorescent nights both bring accelerated effort."