46 turtles hatch after surviving monitor lizard attack at southern islands

46 turtles hatch after surviving monitor lizard attack at southern islands

turtles Nov 2 NParks
54 days after they were first noticed, 46 hatchlings emerged at one of the southern islands on Wednesday. (Photo: NParks)

SINGAPORE: Forty-six turtle hatchlings emerged from a nest at one of Singapore's southern islands on Wednesday (Nov 1), the National Parks Board (NParks) said in a Facebook post on Thursday.

Without naming the island, the agency said that a volunteer discovered a monitor lizard feeding on the turtle eggs on Sept 8. With the help of Singapore Land Authority (SLA), the nest was safeguarded until the eggs were ready to hatch.

Fifty-four days later, 46 baby turtles hatched. The NParks team took down their vital statistics and with the help of SLA, members of the Turtle Working Group, and the Tropical Marine Science Institute, the turtles were "released in a suitable location".

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One of the turtle hatchlings. The eggs were first noticed by a volunteer. (Photo: NParks)

"We wish these hatchlings all the best and hope to see them back on our shores again someday," NParks said. 

NParks also recommended anyone who comes across a nesting turtle to call the agency at 1800 471 7300 and to keep a distance from the turtle and eggs.

"Talk softly and stay out of sight. Do not shine lights at the turtle or use flash photography. Light and noise may scare the turtle, and cause it to leave without laying any eggs," NParks said.

It's at least the third time the sea animals have been sighted in Singapore in recent months.

On Aug 23, a hawksbill turtle was spotted laying eggs at East Coast Park while hatchlings were seen trying to make their way to the sea from the beach just a week before that.

Source: CNA/kc