November 23, 2010

Influx of Olive Ridley Hatchlings

We are now experiencing a huge influx of Olive Ridley turtle hatchlings, which is the result of the past arribada. So each night on patrol we have to walk extra carefully to not step on eager babies, that are crawling to the sea. And in the morning and in the afternoon we are  helping out in hatchling surveys, in order to keep predation by voltures and dogs to a minimum, and also to prevent babies frying (literally) in the sun on the dark-sand beach. Furthermore certain nests are getting exhumated after the hatching and the biometrics and weigths of these hatchlings get meticulously recorded. 
Photo ID of Olive Ridley Turtle.

Emerging Olive Ridley hatchlings.

Each arribada we have got around 200,000 females coming to lay their eggs, and by an overall clutch success of around 30% in Ostional that makes 60,000 nests that are awaited to hatch. In total we are expecting around 600,000-1,200,000 Olive Ridley hatchlings to emerge the coming days.
Since we don't have that much work to do during the days this week, we are helping the Ridley project out, which is barely able to comply with their work load. 

Just a cute Ridley Hatchling.

We still haven't got a single Leatherback female, and the excitement is growing, and of course the competition about who will have the first Leatherback of this season. We had a few Black turtles, two that have been tagged end of October by Jairo, Jaykel, and me (Chris),  and two new ones. So we will continue patrolling and waiting. 

Since we are not constructing the hatchery anymore, people are starting to experience a surplus of energy and started already to look-out for other physical work-outs. Hence, the gym Ostinonal had to open-up, and is already highly frequented. 

The girls already doing their 100th round of
pull-ups and push-ups!
Cody, deserted by his training-partner Elmar
(who was out saving hatchlings),
showing-off with five pull-ups!

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