Monday, February 27, 2012

Turtle Conservation Project Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5; twenty turtles released

Turtle Conservation Project Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5; twenty turtles released

After two previous reports about the Turtle Conservation Project Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5, one in August last year, when the Olive Ridley turtles were still really young and small and a follow up in November last year, this time around the twenty biggest turtles were released.

On their way to the ocean

Out of the some 80 turtles, the biggest and fattest turtles were selected to make their big journey.

Measuring for length

It was a well anticipated event by the staff at Oceans 5 and Dave, who just completed his Divemaster training at Oceans 5 and is about to get married next week, had the honors of releasing the turtles with his future bride and wife, Victoria.

20 turtles waiting to be released in their temporary boxes

After the 20 'lucky' turtles were selected, we walked over to a quiet part of the beach on Gili Air, and our initially small group of people grew to a sizable group from all kinds of people that followed when we passed them, until we had some 40 people on the beach in the end.

Turtles, start your engines! The long walk to the water starts

The sizable crowd that gathered to witness the event

Out of the 20 turtles, 3 were taken 'back home' again, to their basins, since they kept swimming back to land, 2 of them and one just never really started to swim, although he was in the water.

It was a great event and I'm very happy that I was able to witness it. Hopefully one or two of the turtles survive, thus helping to sustain the turtle population around the Gili's.

Hats off to Oceans 5 for the initiative. Now the population is down to around 60 Olive Ridley turtles and last week one very young turtle was brought in, too small to determine if it's a Green turtle or a hawksbill turtle. It's that tiny! More to follow later............

Camille

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