| Seychelles| Turtle Hatchling Rescue
afternoon our anchor got stuck in a mooring. When we were trying to untangle
it, I saw a baby turtle hatchling in the water, hidden in some seaweed
among all the oil and rubbish. So we carefully got in the dinghy and gently
paddled towards the place where it had been. Meanwhile my mom still on
the boat fished one out with a bucket and said: “I got it”!
But then dad said: "But what’s this one over here?" There
were more of them! Then Casper and I, who were in the dinghy, fished the
one out that dad had spotted. We fished it out very carefully and put
it in a bucket of fresh salt water without oil. Then we went to look for
more, and we found another one. We fished it out just as carefully as
with the last one. Then we looked for more but didn’t find any.
We returned with the hatchlings to the boat and put them in another bucket
with more water in it and rinsed some seaweed and put it in the bucket
as well (so they will feel that they have protection). Two of the hatchlings
could be brothers or sisters because they both had some algae growing
on them and they were the same size. The third one had maybe just hatched
because it was smaller and had no algae and was very clean. I felt proud
that I may have saved three turtle hatchlings and I liked having some
turtles on board. Then I went to bed.
The next morning we got up early to go to Cousin island. On the way there
we discovered that every time we would come to see the hatchlings they
would sit absolutely still, so you would think they were dead or part
of the seaweed. We also thought that they couldn't swim down and practice
swimming because there wasn’t enough room. We changed the bucket
to a bigger square blue bucket which they liked. We took some seaweed
out of the bucket and that was a good idea because the turtles started
swimming down and going under the seaweed and swimming around the bucket.
They were now very active and I was watching them a lot. I saw they where
trying to eat the seaweed, it looked so cute. This is how they did it:
they bit down on the seaweed and pushed the rest of the seaweed away with
their front flippers. Have a look
at the little movie clip. Then we arrived at Cousin island and we
wanted to set them free but we saw some big fish swimming around our boat
that might eat them. There were also waves breaking on the rocks down
current so we decided to keep them a bit longer.
The next morning we went to the Sister islands where we wanted to free
the hatchlings. When we got there we decided it was a good place to set
them free. So my dad and I carefully took the bucket and lowered it gently
into the dinghy. We all got in the dinghy and drifted back a little bit.
Then we lowered the bucket into the water and off they went! Mom and Casper
also got into the water to film and photograph them. While dad and I watched
them they all went in different directions. The smallest hatchling went
swimming off, another one stayed with a little bit of seaweed and the
third one went off in a another direction and found a little bit of plant
and stayed with it for camouflage.
I liked having them on board but they really belong in the sea. I missed
them! I hope that they will be alright and survive to become big turtles
that will come back one day to nest on the beach where they were born.