Cozumel, Q.R. — Approximately 7,500 baby sea turtles were released into the sea prior to the arrival of Hurricane Grace, leaving environmental officials to protect 120 nests.
Mauricio Martin Mendoza, the Deputy Director of Ecology for Cozumel said that as soon as the monitoring for Grace began, they began rescue work to protect 120 nests from inevitable strong waves.
“According to nest rescue protocols, rescues were being made of those that already had hatched and of those that already had an incubation process of more than 30-35 days that were at risk due to the increase in waves,” he explained.
Prior to the arrival of the hurricane, approximately 7,500 baby turtles were released from 65 nests. That figure was in addition to the more than 800 nests that have hatched naturally so far this season.
Martin Mendoza said that rescue efforts included the participation of the several island brigades, and that after the hurricane passed, 943 more loggerhead and green sea turtle hatchlings were released.
He noted that a few hours after the passing of Grace, several adult turtles had arrived to nest in the eastern portion of the island.