Sea Turtle Monitoring Program
Sea turtles are one of the oldest animals on our plant, having been in existence for nearly 100 million years, their ancestors Santanachelys can be found in many fossil records dating back 112 million years.
Sea turtles are found in all the temperate seas and oceans around the world. Divided into populations it has been over the recent years with DNA and genetic research that scientists are seeing that there are a number of genetically independent groups of sea turtles
With satellite tagging and Genetic studies we are learning more and more about Turtles and their travels some have been recorded to travel great distance between feeding and nesting grounds.
It is in water data and observations that are now vital to help build a better picture of what these populations are doing in each area. By recording their size and sex (if distinguishable) and behavior it will help build a better picture of what the different marine areas are to the Turtles and it will help support better protection methods for them in these areas.
Raja Ampat was declared a Turtle sanctuary in 2012, however little to no monitoring or protection is taking place for these beautiful creatures.
Our aim is to record as much information as we can every time we see a Turtle, where we see it, what it is doing and hopefully identify if it is a turtle we have seen in this area before.
There are more and more methods being developed to identify individual turtles. It was not that long ago discovered that the pattern of the scutes on the sides of the heads of green turtles is distinct to each individual like a finger print.
This is the first phase of a multi tiered project. Once we have tested and had success with logging methods with our guests we will look to broaden the project area buy training other resorts and liveaboards in the area to also report and log their turtle sightings. The long term aim of this project is to aid efforts in the correct protection of Sea Turtles in the area and encourage the local community to aid in their protection, which in turn will provide livelihoods for future generations.
Sea Turtles are one of the most important key species in the maintenance of a healthy marine environment. They play an extremely important role in keeping the balance of each ecosystem they reside in. For example Hawksbills main diet is sponges, if sponges were left without control they would take over the coral reef system as they grow faster than hard corals and compete for space. Green Turtle play a vital role in the maintenance of sea grass beds. To learn more about Sea Turtles
To learn more about out monitoring project and how you can contribute: Turtle monitoring project
All about our Turtle monitoring project
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