A Green Turtle came ashore Thanda Island, the exclusive Indian Ocean hideaway off the southern coast of Tanzania, to lay her eggs on the beach between the boathouse and the helipad, this month
The Thanda Island team are thrilled their persistent pleas for increased policing from the Marine Parks Authorities has been rewarded, as turtles had not been seen for seven years, due to endemic illegal fishing practices in the waters around the island. Now they can be seen in the surrounding waters.
Furthering their commitment to the conservation of the region’s sea turtles, Thanda Island works with the Tanzanian marine conservation NGO Sea Sense to address a shared concern for the biodiversity of these waters. Assisting with research, education and the broader engagement of local communities, they encourage dialogue and communication around the importance of sea turtle conservation and threats to sea turtle survival to the local Swahili seafaring communities.
Although Sea Sense has worked hard to implement a series of successful measures to reduce the routine poaching of turtle nests off nearby Mafia Island, sadly the practice has not yet been abandoned on the smaller islands around Mafia. More than half of all nests laid in Tanzania each year are laid around Mafia Island.
Thanda’s 20 staff undergo regular turtle conservation training comprising essential field skills such as nest protection, relocation (should it be required) and post-hatching excavations to record hatching success. With a 55-day incubation period, the hatchlings are due on May 27 when they will make the heart-felt and determined dash to the seashore.
- All-inclusive use of Thanda Island is offered at US$10,000 per night
- Green turtles are named for the colour of their cartilage and fat, not their shells. They migrate long distances between feeding grounds and the beaches they hatched from. Classified as endangered, green turtles are threatened by overharvesting of their eggs, hunting, being caught in fishing gear and loss of nesting beach sites. Source WWF