Baby Turtle Release in Puerto Escondido

Puerto Escondido on the Oaxacan coast of Mexico, you’ll probably have read or heard about the turtle conservation efforts here.

Every day, just before sunset, people gather on the beaches of Puerto Escondido to assist in the baby turtle release. The cost of releasing one turtle is 100 pesos and the money raised is circled back into protecting this beautiful but endangered species.

Upon arriving at the release site, we were shown around a large tent where the sea turtles’ eggs were buried. The turtles don’t actually lay their eggs here; instead, the team here works tirelessly through the night to find, remove and rebury the eggs as the turtles lay them. We learned more about this on our night tour, which is detailed below.

Small enclosures hold newly hatched turtles; you can hold and touch these, but please be gentle. Some of these new hatchlings are only minutes old! These were the turtles that we would be releasing shortly.

Next, you will be given a coconut shell containing your turtles! Be careful because they will try to escape; it’s best to cover the shell with your hand as you make your way down onto the beach to the release spot.

Once we got close to the shoreline, the guide drew a line in the sand, which marked where to release the turtles. It’s important they make their own way down into the water rather than being released directly into the water. Some of the turtles seem to have a better instinct than others, with some waddling straight down in the direction of the sea and others having a harder time finding which way to go! After a few minutes, though, all of the turtles made it into the ocean! I had read online about there sometimes being an issue with the seagulls and other birds coming along at release time and grabbing the turtles

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