Turtle Island Park - Pulau Selingan
Selingan Travel Blog› entry 20 of 32 › view all entries
September 19th, 2007 – by: sissanoel
Libaran Island provided a nice spot to see a 20 minute video about the turtles and the conservation park that has been created jointly by the Malaysian and Philippine governments in the area, before a quick wander around the village and lunch. The boat then took us on another 20 minute ride across to Pulau Selingan, where we stayed the night to watch the green turtle egg laying.
We watched the sun go down on the beach with a tin of Carlsberg in hand - a most pleasant way to end the day - then had dinner at 7.30pm. From then on, it is just a case of waiting until you get the ranger's call that a turtle is laying. Luckily for us (because they'd been arriving quite late), our turtle had the good grace to be laying by 9.15pm! Our group of about 15 took off after the ranger and got to see a huge green turtle laying her last 20 or so eggs of a nest of 72. Her carapice was over 1 metre across, so a big one, but she hadn't been to the island to lay before, so was tagged before she headed back to the water. After we left her in peace, we went to the hatchery where the ranger placed all of the eggs into their hole, home for the next 6 weeks or so. Apparently temperature decides upon which sex the babies will be, with higher temperatures meaning girls and lower temperatures giving boys. The hatchery try to get a few more girls than boys, simply because they're the only ones that can lay eggs in future. Stage 3 was to follow the ranger back to the beach with tonight's hatchlings, and watching the gorgeous little things make their way into the sea. Unfortunately, less than 5% of them will survive, but they've had a better start than those in the wild, just be ensuring that they hatched. Many don't make it that far due to erosion of the nests, predators and so on.
Because of our extremely considerate turtle, we were in bed by 10.30pm where we spent the rest of the night enjoying a mob of rats mambo-ing backwards and forwards across our ceiling - well, it is a nature island!
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