Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Turtles and Taxis

The turtle folks have posted an interesting tidbit on their Facebook page recently and since we're heading into egg laying season, I thought I'd relay it here. Especially since some a-hole who was at a recent hatching, stole some hatchlings and started handing them out down at Port Zante like party favors.

What should you do if you find a hatchling sea turtle?

Call the Sea Turtle Hotline (764-6664) immediately so that a trained SKSTMN Sea Turtle Technician can respond to you!

Sea turtle hatchlings must make the crawl to the ocean on their own and immediately after they emerge. If they are held for any period of time (to be admired, photographed, shown to visitors) they exhaust natural energy stores and become too weak to make it past the near shore waters where predators are bountiful. Sea turtle hatchlings have around 72 hours of energy stores when they emerge and once they hit the ocean they SWIM SWIM SWIM and do not stop to feed.

Dropping them into the water or transporting them out to diving or snorkeling sites is also a detrimental as these tiny hatchlings need to make this crawl and swim to orient themselves. The best thing to do is leave the sea turtle alone and contact professionals to assist both you and the turtle. In come cases, the hatchling may actually be sick and dehydrated and need medical attention before they can be released as well. Each event adds valuable data in the study of St. Kitts sea turtle populations and nesting behaviors.

To learn more about hatchling sea turtles and their built in “GPS navigation system,” etc. check out this article and video.

Only 1 in 1,000 of these endangered animals survive to adulthood and it is our responsibility to make sure they have that chance. The SKSTMN is here to facilitate that opportunity! Contact us at skturtles@gmail.com or reply here with any questions. And…as always we are here to answer your sea turtle emergency calls on the Sea Turtle Hotline 24/7 at 764-6664.

It looks they're going to get a little $ from an environmental fund too. Good for them. If you're up for a swim to help our turtle friends, then be sure to join the Cross Channel Swim in March.

I was also finally able to get an updated pricing sheet for taxis on the island (thank you Tourism Board). The last pricing list had been from 2005 and was really off. This reminds me that I'm still disappointed about the lack of bus system running in Frigate Bay/SE Peninsula. We're not all on a vacationer's budget, including locals working on projects or playing on this side of the island. Anyway, it's on my Link page, but I'll post it below too, so it'll come up on Google searches eventually.