February 17, 2022
Forest Range Officer of the marine sanctuary Debashis Bhoi informed that Intermittent nesting of endangered Olive Ridley Sea turtles has started at Gahirmatha beach in Kendrapara with around 60 turtles laying eggs in the last three days at Nasi-1 and Nasi-2 islands within the sanctuary.
Forest officials are on alert apprehending the arrival of more turtles at the site to lay eggs in the coming days. To protect the eggs from predators like dogs, jackals, bears and birds, the Forest department has set up hatcheries at Aagarnasi, Pentha and Babubali on the beach.
Last year, around 3.5 lakh Olive Ridley sea turtles had nested from March 9-23 on the two islands. Officials of the Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO) had recently put off bright lights at the integrated missile testing centre at Abdul Kalam island for the safe arrival of turtles at Gahiramatha. The Forest department has also demarcated the boundary of the marine sanctuary by engaging seven floating buoys 20 km from the coastline covering 1,435 square kilometres in the sea from Hukitola to Dhamra.
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