The number of Olive Ridley turtles nesting along the Odisha coast has been growing consistently over the last seven years.
This good news contines this year as well, because the endangered Olive Ridley turtles have laid a record 3.55 lakh eggs in the coast of Odisha within a span of one week, an official said on Monday.
“Over 3,55,000 eggs have been laid by Olive Ridley sea turtles within a week of mass nesting in Rushikulya river mouth of Ganjam coast, which is an all-time record. The turtles had laid 3,09,000 eggs last year,” Ashish Kumar Behera, the divisional forest officer in Berhampur division, told IANS.
He said the egg laying may touch four lakh this year as the Sunday night calculation was yet to be completed.
“The egg laying that began on February 13 is likely to end on Monday,” he said.
The Odisha Forest Department has arranged high security for smooth and safe egg laying of the endangered turtles. Special precautions are being taken to increase the number, like dark sky lighting technology which will prevent disorientation of turtles. And even marine police are on guard to utilise their vessels to chase and capture trespassers. The Forest Department has deployed speedboats and trawlers with staff to guard the coast and has restricted entry of fishing trawlers into the zone.
“We have already made all arrangements, including establishing observation camps, fencing coast with nets and patrolling in sea for protection of the sea turtles and their eggs during their mass nesting,” said Behera.
The eggs hatch after 45 days of nesting. Amidst all the climate change and excessive poaching, the uphill count in their numbers is definitely a good sign for the marine life on Indian beaches.
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