Caretta caretta nests detected on Patara beach
ANTALYA – Demirören News Agency
At least 116 nests have been detected on Patara Beach in the Kaş district of the southern province of Antalya, as the team tasked with protecting them started works on June 1.
The rate of nests detected last year had broken a record with 286 of them.
The world-famous Patara beach is one of the 22 most important caretta caretta turtle breeding areas in Turkey. This year, a team of three experts continues to observe caretta carettas on the ancient beach. The beach and nests are monitored with special devices to determine the sex of the new offspring. Thus, it will be possible to estimate how many of the offspring can be female and how many of them can be male at the end of the year.
As someone with experience in sea turtle protection for about 12 years, Ayfer Şirin, one of the coastal coordinators, is determined to share her knowledge both with other project team staff and domestic and foreign tourists coming to the beach. Other staff members of the project, Mutlu Çelik and Muhammed Balı, continue to protect the nests every night on the beach by watching them.
Caretta caretta hatchings are observed in the 12-kilometer section of Patara Beach, which is one of the longest beaches in the world. Seven kilometers of this section are part of the Special Environmental Protection Area.
Professor Eyüp Başkale stated that the number of nests was 75 on the same date last year, adding that the number of nests is 116 this year.
Stating that the number of nests may be higher than last years’, Başkale said that they did not only carry out conservation activities on the Patara beach, but also carried out ecosystem-based conservation activities and they watched all the creatures in the immediate vicinity of the beach.
This year, volunteers from the non-governmental organizations cannot be included in the observation team due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Each nest detected is protected with sub-surface cages, and the nests in areas, where human density is seen, are protected with both sub-surface and above-surface wire cages.
Warning signs are also placed to protect the nests. In the information office on the beach, information and awareness studies in Turkish and English are continuing for the visitors.