Turtle volunteers sought
It’s turtle season, and Care for Hedland is inviting people to volunteer and join its two new recruits down at local beaches.
Beginning on October 30, the conservation of the local threatened flatback sea turtles will begin, with volunteers helping scientific co-ordinator Briony Nash and evening coordinator Skye McPherson monitor the threatened species.
People wanting to see the turtles, however, were being warned not to go by themselves but to join a tour going down where they could see them without disturbing the animals Care for Hedland co-ordinator Melissa Wood said.
“Torches, flashes and light disturb the turtles so they won’t come out and lay, or they make them go back into the water,” she said.
“We don’t want them wasting their energy.”
The turtle monitoring program aims not only to bring awareness and education on the threatened species, but to collect data concerning flatback turtle activity in the area.
“The turtles are endemic to the area,” Ms Nash, a UK-born marine biologist said.
“That’s why it’s really important to look after them and why we’re running the program.”
Ms McPherson, who is trained in natural resource management, will be leading the tours to see the turtles, while Ms Nash will be tagging turtles and monitoring their nesting patterns.
Care for Hedland is calling for members of the public to sign up and join as program volunteers. “We want as many volunteers as we can get,” Ms Wood said.
“If anyone sees us around town they can come and talk to us about it.”
For more information on how to volunteer visit the website at www.careforhedland. org.au or like the group on Facebook at Care For Hedland Turtle Monitoring
A turtle on the mud flats at Hearson Cove, near Karratha.