How about walking along the sea shore on a full moon night holding the hand of your loved one? Quite romantic right!? The best part is the waves and the moon-light, which together creates a mesmerizing effect adding to the gloominess. But that's not all! We weren't on a romantic walk or dinner. We joined hands with some active conservationist for turtle-walk.
Turtle walk is a participatory conservation effort made for saving the endangered sea turtle species. There are about seven species of sea turtles in the world. Olive Ridley is one among them, which nest across east coast of India. Orissa is the mast nesting zone and others being the coast of Andhra and Tamilnadu. Why do we save turtle? How come we save them without even entering the sea? What is the importance of these sea turtles? These are the commonly asked questions when it comes to sea turtle conservation. Alright, here we go.
Sea turtle stands top at food chain and hence it is an indicator species in marine environment, just like tiger in land. It has a varied diet like sea grass, sponges, jelly fishes, etc. Imagine, if there is no sea turtle, jelly fishes may flourish in sea, who consumes fish eggs and larva. This in turn reduces the fish species and affects our fishermen's livelihood. This is the basic reason why we have to save these sea turtle species. Same goes with sea grass and sponges as well. Sea grass acts as a nursery for variety of fishes; turtles trims it on timely basis, thereby maintaining its health. Sea turtle maintains the health of coral reef by keeping the population of sponges in check, which if not maintained affects coral reef. Coral reef as you know serves as a huge shelter for variety of aquatic organisms (For further information about corals visit http://creatikaa.blogspot.in/2014/12/coral-reefs-rainforest-of-sea.html).
Sea turtle don't lay eggs on sea and hence it comes to the shore and does it. These eggs, when hatches has to come across various hurdles like stray dogs, humans, lighting, etc., to survive. And there comes our job to conserve these species. We find these eggs and relocate it to the safe place saving them from their natural enemies. Soon after the hatchlings comes out, we leave them back into the sea. This is the background about this entire stuff.
We started walking (My wife and I) along with the active conservationist, who are doing this job for the past 25 years and so. The searching part is where we become Sherlock Holmes, quite adventurous. First thing we should look for, is the stray marks across the shore, which is not an easy task to do in darkness. We are glad that moon light assisted us. After a long hectic search, we found the marks, an experienced lad helped us though. Then comes the second task, we should carefully locate the place where the turtle must have laid the eggs and should check it by chucking a stick into the sand. If there is a nest, the stick will slide freely into it otherwise it won't. We got to be extra careful while doing this as we might broke the eggs. Yes we found the nest, at last and collected the eggs (107) and relocated it carefully to the safe location.
|Hatchlings just came out of eggs|
That was an awesome experience we had together. We communicated, coordinated, planned and executed everything on field. It gave us strength and motivation to handle things in our life. And most important of all is the bonding. This walk made our bond even more stronger, filling our life with optimism.
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Turtle walk and being together... Reviewed by T R Gowthama on 08:36 Rating: