Around 3,23,063 Olive Ridley turtles had nested at the Rushikulya rookery this year
Heartwarming videos showing baby Olive Ridley turtles returning to the sea goes viral! Weeks after the mass nesting of Olive Ridley turtles along the coast of Odisha, the eggs started to hatch, and on Friday people fond of ecology posted videos of thousands of baby tortoises heading for the sea. The stunning sight of the thousands of turtles heading into the sea was trending on social media.
Olive Ridley turtles are settled in the eastern state at the Gahirmatha and Rushikulya rookery laying their eggs in the sand as from late March. Officials said the tiny hatchlings started to emerge from the sand from the beginning of May and make their journey toward the water without any human intervention.
About 2 crore plus olive hatchlings of Ridley have emerged from half of around 4 lakh nesting on Nasi-2 islands, Gahirmatha rookery Odisha, an Indian Forest Service officer from Odisha, Susanta Nanda has tweeted. Describing it as a sight that year after year casts a magical spell, the officer posted a clip of the hatchlings that made their way to the sea.
Around 3,23,063 Olive Ridley turtles had nested at the Rushikulya rookery this year, according to a report in The Hindu. The process of mass nesting began in the wee hours of March 21 and continued until the night of March 28. Olive Ridley turtle eggs incubate in the heat of beach sand by themselves.
They hatch in 45 to 60 days, depending on sand and atmospheric temperature during the incubation period. Mass hatching was also expected to follow the same route as mass nesting numbers had slowly risen to hit the peak and then decreased, the DFO said. The Forest department had put up metal net fencing over 5 km from Gokharkuda to Bateswar to shield the eggs from predators and humans and the area was divided into 50 segments for daily surveillance.
Olive Ridley turtles are known scientifically by the name ‘Lepidochelys olivacea’. They are the species of Reptiles and are carnivores in nature. Their average lifespan is 50 years and their size ranges between 2 to 2.5 feet.