Olive Ridley eggs hatch in thousands in Ganjam

Olive Ridley eggs hatch in thousands in Ganjam

Thousands of hatchlings are coming out of the nests buried under sand on this coast to venture into the sea. The Rushikulya rookery coast near Berhampur city in Ganjam district of Odisha is a major mass nesting site for Olive ridley turtles in India. This year, over 3,85,000 mother turtles reached the coast to lay eggs. Each nest contains around 100 eggs. This means over three crore hatchlings are expected to come out of the nests. On an average, 80 hatchlings come out of each nest.

Olive Ridley, microstat

“As the rate of mortality among the hatchlings is so high, the Olive Ridley remains an endangered species,” Berhampur Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Ashis Behera said.

Forest range officer Dilip Kumar Martha said the hatching had started in a small number of nests on April 2. The process picked up on the night of April 7 and is expected to last for the next five days. This year, hatching was delayed by a few days because of the rains on the night of April 2.

Bivash Pandav, a scientist of the Wildlife Institute of India, pointed to an interesting fact. The hatchlings come out of the sand 48 hours after they hatch. During this period, they remain under the sand, getting oxygen through the porous sand, their shells turning hard for them to cope with the condition outside.

The Hindu, Sib Kumar Das

 BERHAMPUR APRIL 10, 2017

Olive Ridley turtles begin nesting in Ganjam

Olive Ridley turtles begin nesting in Ganjam

With 67,000 mother turtles turning up to lay eggs, mass nesting of endangered Olive Ridley turtles started at Rushikulya rookery coast in Ganjam district from Tuesday night.

Olive Ridley turtlesIn 2016, there was no mass nesting at the Rushikulya rookery coast although large number of turtles had congregated in sea for mating. Till now mass nesting has occurred only near the Rushikulya rookery. As a prelude, more than 8,000 mother Olive Ridleys had nested here on Tuesday night.

“Mass nesting has started early this year,” said Berhampur Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Ashis Kumar Behera. The process is expected to continue for the next few days as innumerable Olive Ridleys are visible in sea near the coast. Female Olive Ridleys are mostly venturing into the sandy coast between Gokharkuda and Podampeta at Rushikulya rookery for nesting. Although these marine turtles are nocturnal animals, some of them were seen coming over to the coast to lay eggs even till 9 am on Wednesday.

This year, the Forest Department has entrusted the Marine Science Department of Berhampur University to research on geological and environmental factors on the nesting, said the DFO. Gopalpur unit of the Zoologcal Survey of India is also expected to participate in this.

“Mass nesting has started early this year,” said Berhampur Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Ashis Kumar Behera. The process is expected to continue for the next few days as innumerable Olive Ridleys are visible in sea near the coast. Female Olive Ridleys are mostly venturing into the sandy coast between Gokharkuda and Podampeta at Rushikulya rookery for nesting. Although these marine turtles are nocturnal animals, some of them were seen coming over to the coast to lay eggs even till 9 am

The Forest Department has also requested the Notified Area Council of Ganjam town and Jayashree Chemicals to shut off their major lights at night to avoid distracting the turtles. Entry of tourists to the mass nesting site has also been restricted by the Forest Department.

BERHAMPUR, FEBRUARY 16, 2017