Olive Ridley turtles arrive at Gahirmatha sanctuary

Last Updated: Friday, February 26, 2010 - 20:45

Kendrapara: Female Olive Ridley turtles have
arrived to lay eggs at the Gahirmatha marine sanctuary in
Kendrapara district in Orissa, as they do every year.

Around 35,000 of the turtles, an endangered species, have
appeared since yesterday on the beaches on the south eastern
part of Nasi-2 Island, close to the Defence Research
Development Organisation`s defence installation at Wheelers
Island, forest officials said.

With DRDO prohibiting visitors, only forest personnel
on turtle protection duty have access to the nesting ground,
the officials said.

Last year, 1.70 lakh turtles had turned up, while none
had arrived in 2008.

The arrivals would continue for at least five days,
wildlife personnel of Bhitarkanika National Park said.

About 50 forest personnel are deployed on the beach to
keep vigil on the mass nesting and to keep away predators like
wild dogs.

An Olive Ridley Turtle usually lays about 120 to 150
eggs which hatch after about 45 to 50 days.

PTI




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