Tur­tle hatch­ing success

Once-in-a-life­time ex­pe­ri­ence

The Coffs Coast Advocate - - NEWS - RACHEL VER­COE rachel.ver­coe@coff­s­coas­tad­vo­cate.com.au

THE much-watched green tur­tle nest on Boam­bee Beach came alive on Satur­day with hun­dreds of ba­bies mak­ing their way to the ocean, with some as­sis­tance.

It was an un­for­get­table day and a great out­come for every­one in­volved in project Hatch on the Coffs Coast.

“On Fri­day morn­ing, vol­un­teers dis­cov­ered hatch­ling tracks from the nest,” Na­tional Parks and Wildlife Ser­vice ranger Greg Wal­lace said.

“The next day, more hatch­ling tracks were found and the baby it­self was found and seen as a bit weak.

“A de­ci­sion was made, with Dol­phin Marine Magic vets, a tur­tle bi­ol­o­gist and Na­tional Parks to ex­ca­vate the nest.

“With care­ful ex­ca­va­tion and the help of vol­un­teers, we got down to hard packed sand and started find­ing hatch­lings who had bro­ken out of their eggs and were work­ing their way up out of the nest cham­ber.

“We then sorted out which ones were in good enough con­di­tion to re­lease im­me­di­ately and the ones deemed a bit weak stayed overnight at DMM be­fore be­ing re­leased.

“Some eggs hadn’t hatched yet and a cou­ple looked like crabs may have got into them.

“It was re­ally suc­cess­ful, we’re pleased with the re­sult and it was a great out­come for the tur­tles.

“It’s been a big year for tur­tles and this was a very spe­cial mo­ment, very few peo­ple get to see it.

“In this area it’s a re­ally rare event to ex­pe­ri­ence and there was such a great mood and at­mos­phere on day.

“Every­one was so pos­i­tive they ex­pe­ri­enced a re­ally spe­cial mo­ment.”

Pho­tos: Bryce For­rest

HELLO: Green tur­tle hatch­ling peek­ing out.

Green tur­tle hatch­lings mak­ing their way into the ocean.

The team of helpers ex­ca­vat­ing the tur­tle nest.

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