Leatherback Sea Turtles Nest in Florida and Thailand Beaches After Travel Restrictions

The immensity of the changes that the quarantine period brought with it, is seen throughout nature. Lesser pollution, freedom for animals both in the wild as well in captivity, the list goes on. I know, still, there are undisciplined people who go to beaches despite the imposed laws. However, thanks to the people who obey the law and keep away from the beaches (which are crowded places where you can easily spread/get infected with the coronavirus), more and more sea turtles are visiting beaches.

The latest countries to join this good news are Thailand and Florida.

Thailand is a country that depends very much on the foreign income it receives from tourism. However, due to the prevailing situation, the country’s tourism industry is at a halt. Well, the good news is, the absence of people in beaches has made it easier for animals who are actually supposed to be in beaches, to visit there without any fear.

The leatherback sea turtles are the largest living turtles, and they are rare. And the best news is that these endangered animals are nesting in Thai beaches for the first time in five years! As of now, these turtles have made 11 nests, and this surpasses the number during the last 20 years.

 A newly hatched leatherback sea turtle makes its way into a sea for the first time at a beach in Phang-nga district, Thailand. Photograph: Reuters
A newly hatched leatherback sea turtle makes its way into a sea for the first time at a beach in Phang-nga district, Thailand. Photograph: Reuters

“This is a very good sign for us because turtles have a high risk of getting killed by fishing gear and humans disturbing the beach,” the director of the Phuket Marine Biological Centre told The Guardian.

The same good news is heard from the Sunshine State in Florida

Compared to last year, the number of leatherback sea turtle nests have increased. This is good news because Juno beach is the most densely nested sea turtle beach in the entire world.

Last year, an estimated 21,000 nests from various species were found in this beach. This year, with only 2 weeks into the summer nesting season, 76 nesting sites were marked for the leatherback.

Since there no people or dogs walking on the beach, there’s hope that the eggs can survive the 60 days until they hatch.

“Our world has changed, but these turtles have been doing this for millions of years and it’s just reassuring and gives us hope that the world is still going on,” Sarah Hirsch told West Palm Beach’s WPEC-TV news.

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