Category Archives: Turtle Release

110 Releases

November has been a very busy month here at Watamu Turtle Watch with over 110 turtles released by our catch program. This is the largest number in one month since we started this program 10 years ago! We have had two great volunteers this month who have participated in numerous releases and the last 3 hatching events for this year. It’s always an amazing experience to watch the nests explode and the little hatchlings run down the beach.

This month we also welcomed back Kahindi, our outreach and education coordinator. He has been studying hard and now comes back to us with new skills to bring to his work. All the fisher groups have been eagerly awaiting his return. We are also welcoming Nelly Kadogai as a full time staff member to coordinate the local and international volunteer programs.

December also promises to be another busy turtle month for Watamu and its visitors. We are looking forwad to a Happy Turtle Christmas.

September Update

Well, Septemeber has been a busy month for us here with over 49 turtles releases back into the ocean. We had a fairly rare occurence with a large male green turtle nearly 1.5 metres long coming to us with a hook imbedded in its front flipper, we managed to remove it quickly and he was release back into the marine park. It has been a month of hook injuries with 2 other female turtles coming to us with hooks lodged in their throats from fishing line , with a littel perserverance we managed to sort them out and send them back to the  sea.

We  have some new residents in the rehabilitation centre with 7 little hatchling residing with us while we feed them up  before taking them by boat and releasing  them back into the ocean. They ar eeating so much w e are calling them the little fatties. The rehabilitaion centre this month has also seen the rlesae of our little hawksbill who has been with us for 6 months and she was finally released back into the park on thursday – we were both very happy and sad to see her go.

Technologically this month has been challenging wiht  a massive power surge which has blown up our  water tank pumps, our DVD palyer, 2 computer cords and a small fridge. The challenges of a non functioning power supply. Luckily no one was hurt but now we need to replace what was lost.

We have also been working hard on the development and improvement of our volutneer program and it is starting to really look good and we have our next volutneer arriving this month. We are looking forwad to having more hands on deck particualrly as we are getting into the season for large turtle releases adn november to January are our busiest release months with up to 90 turtles being released each month.

July Turtle Tales

It has been a busy month here at Local Ocean Trust -Watamu Turtle Watch, with our new accommodation filling up, and lots of turtle action keeping our ecotourist volunteers busy. There have been 38 rescues and releases this month, with up to 4 rescues a day. There were 24 Green Turtles, 13 Hawksbill Turtles, and our first successful live Loggerhead Turtle rescue. It has also been a busy month for the nesting turtles, with 3 new nests being laid and 4 nests hatching producing a total of 493 live hatchlings, with nearly all the hatchlings making it to the sea.

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Our rehabilitation centre currently has 3 Turtles. 2 Hawksbill Turtles recuperating and gaining strength with the hope of releasing them in the hopefully not to distant future, but we will update you with their progress every month. Kasumni, who has been with us for the last 4 years, has been going for regular sea swims with the ecotourists, to help her get used to her future home. We have to take the little hawksbill, who has a blockage of the gut, to be x-rayed every fortnight, but unfortunately due to our limited facilities, and limited local medical facilities, we have to take her to Malindi Hospital to get her fortnightly x-ray, which raises eyebrows in the waiting room! We also had a new arrival, a Green Turtle, who was the victim of a speargun fisherman, and was rescued from Uyombo.

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Edward ( our community education coordinator)organised the Environmental and Animal Welfare education drama and poetry competition at the local high school in Gede, for 19 local primary and high schools, which had over 400 students participating in it. The volunteers were asked to act as judges, which they were all very excited about. It was an entertaining day; and was great to see the enthusiasm and talent of the local children, and to know the issue of animal welfare and environmental issues were being taken so seriously and passionately by them.

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One of volunteers, Tim, had an amazing experience a few weeks ago. Stepping onto the beach for night patrol, he heard a loud noise, went over to investigate and saw a large female green turtle walking up the beach in order to lay her eggs. While this is a regular event on the beaches of Watamu, it is rare to see one as soon as you step foot on the beach! Having just arrived a few days earlier he is a lucky man!

We had a wonderful turn out for our fundraising dinner at Ocean Sports. The food was great, there was a lot of fairly questionable dancing, and great fun was had by all. The raffle was also a great success, especially with the volunteers, nearly all of whom managed to win prizes, and Felicity, who won two, but decided that she shouldn’t be so greedy and gave one back. We raised over ksh80,000, and so many thanks for the generosity to all of those who attended and especially to those who donated raffle prizes.
All this good work would not be possible if it were not for, volunteers, donations, and turtle adoptions. In order to donate or adopt a turtle or if interested in volunteering please go to www.watamuturtlewatch.com
If you are in or visiting Kenya, and are interested in visiting our rehabilitation centre to see all the good work that we do, please come see us at plot 203, Watamu, or visit the Marine Centre next to Watamu Supermarket.
Please note that our phone number has now changed to +254 (0) 42 2332118

marine turtle nest protection and research programme

Watamu & Malindi marine turtle nest protection and research programme.

In 1997 Watamu Turtle Watch initiated a sea turtle nest protection programme for Watamu in co-operation with the local community. Daily patrols by community members check for nesting turtles, new nests, and protect and monitor incubating and hatching nests. Nesting turtles that are encountered are tagged and data collected. Nests are allowed to incubate in situ unless laid in an area threatened by sea wash, in which case they are carefully translocated to a safe area. Research is carried out on nesting and hatching success. To date over 350 nests and 35,000 hatchlings have been protected.

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WTW Staff measuring the nest – a turtle nesting