Ridley sea turtles return to Phang Nga for breeding

PHOTO: World Wildlife Fund

Ridley’s sea turtles, a protected species in Thailand, have returned to Phang Nga beaches to breed, following a 23 year absence from the beach in Thai Muang district.

The turtle eggs have been collected and taken to the nursery at a turtle watch centre on Tha Sai beach for incubation. The nest on the beach has been cordoned off with a bamboo fence.

Jatuporn Burutpat, the director-general of the Marine and Coastal Resources Department, says he had been informed by the chief of Khao Lampee-Hat Thai Muang national park about the discovery of 81 Ridley’s turtle eggs on the beach.

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The Ridley’s turtle is a protected species under Thai law.

“A mature turtle weighs between 45-52 kilograms and averages about 70-75 centimetres in length. It is regarded as the smallest sea turtle and can be found mostly in the Andaman Sea on Kra, Phra Thong and Khor Khao islands, Thai Muang beach of Phang-nga, Mai Khao, Kamala and Rawai beaches in Phuket.”

“Their breeding season is between October and March. However, nesting by turtles on beaches in Phang-nga and Phuket has not been seen for over two decades. Prior to this discovery, the last nesting of Ridley’s turtles was reported in 1996.”


Phuket News
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