I know I’m blessed. Happy, lucky and blessed! 😀
This morning I witnessed 81 Hawksbill turtles hatching on Zeelandia beach, THE sea turtle nesting beach in the Caribbean Netherlands. This is the 7th Hawksbill nest already for this season.
Apart from Hawksbill, also the Green turtle and the critically endangered Leatherback nest here, thanks to the never-ending sea turtle protection by Stenapa. Last month the entrance to this beach was finally blocked for vehicles, to prevent illegal sand mining here (high 5 for NuStar for their support). Sea turtles always come back to lay there eggs on the same beach where they are born, so it’s extremely important to keep this beach in good shape for the future generations of turtles.
Also worth mentioning here: the Stenapa Junior Rangers, small kids with a big future!
Last year I witnessed a Leatherback nest hatching. There’s a clear difference between the two. The Hawksbill is much smaller than the Leatherback. Also, the Hawksbill has a “real” shell, while the Leatherback’s back is, well, leathery (I’m a genius).
First the baby turtles just look like moving sand.
Everybody get your camera ready! Also the kids from the NuStar school were there. Last week two groups from the Golden Rock school had the privilege to watch this miracle.
There you go!
These guys and girls must be pretty smart. Without too many problems they can find their way to the sea. Follow the light! During this short time on the beach (maximum half an hour I’d guess, and that would be a very slow turtle) they have to learn to remember this beach. Thirty years later they will come back to the same spot! I can see the smartness in this turtle’s eyes.
There are ups and downs.
Those human footprints are not an easy hurdle to take.
Follow the leader.
It’s a long way for a tiny turtle.
Almost there. Get ready for the big splash!
See you in 30 years!