Seems like nature has taken the matter into its hand to revive itself. With humans locked inside their houses, owing to COVID-19 outbreak across the world, more than 8 lakh endangered Olive Ridley turtles have returned to the coast of Odisha for mass nesting. A development that was hampered from the past several years because of crowd, ships, and unhindered human movement.

The Gahirmatha Beach and Odisha’s Rushikulya Rookery is now witnessing the arrival of lakhs of Olive Ridleys. These rare sea turtles are renowned for their mass nesting and they come to Indian shores and Odisha’s coast every nesting season; the areas are their largest nesting site in the region.

People have taken to Twitter to share the good news and the pictures of lakhs of turtles nesting undisturbed is simply overwhelming.

The female turtles tend to come back to the same beach where they hatched earlier to lay new eggs. But as per reports, last year in 2019, the coasts did not witness any nesting because of the presence of humans and the massive amount of garbage and waste on the coast.

But this year, the 21-day country lockdown has given these turtles an opportunity to nest again in peace, undisturbed. As per the Forest Department, till Wednesday morning, more than 2,78,502 female turtles have nested at the coast. This year, they have estimated that at least 4.75 lakh turtles will come out to nest on the Rushikulya beach alone. According to estimates, more than six crore eggs will be laid this year.

According to the Odisha Wildlife Organisation ( OWO), nearly 50 per cent of the world population of these rare turtles come to Odisha’s coast for nesting. However, making the eggs hatch successfully is the biggest challenge as they get eaten up by strays or are destroyed by fishing boats over time as the incubation period of the eggs is 45 days.

So, to save them from any harm, the forest department ropes in volunteers and fishermen to keep dogs and boats away from the eggs. Over time, these endangered turtles grow 2 feet in size and weigh nearly 50 kg.

Source Article