A Fiesty Hawksbill Comes To Visit
Tenacious Polly was first seen by Local Ocean Trust in October 2009. Even as a juvenile, with a carapace length of just 46.1cm, Polly was looking to get her crushing jaws on any unsuspecting fingers! We tagged her with the number 4858 and set her free.
Making a Change for Tomorrow
Watamu Young Fishermen group is a registered self-help group with 40 members. The majority of members are between 18 and 30 years old and have had very little formal education to make them competent in the job market. They turn to fishing as an alternative source of income and food for their families. What they lack in formal education they make up for in the extensive knowledge they have about the ocean.
A Success Story from our Turtle Rehabilitation Centre
Glen is a juvenile Hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata). This species is considered to be critically endangered worldwide according to the IUCN Red List.
Glen came to us through our By Catch Release Programme. Although he had been caught in a net, our Field Officers quickly noticed a deep wound on the top of the turtle's head. They brought Glen straight back to our Turtle Rehabilitation Centre for treatment.
The next generation of marine conservationists!
As the year draws to an end, so too does this year’s Marine Scout Programme. To conclude the hard work of our Local Ocean Marine Scouts, we invited their parents to the project for an end of year celebration.
All the Marine Scouts arrived at the project at 4pm with their parents. They looked really smart in their uniforms and their faces shone with excitement as they love their time at LOT.
A Community Group with a Difference.
Situated north of Watamu, Jimba Village is set a little further back from the coastline. The Jimba fishermen use the landing site in the neighbouring coastal village of Kanani.
As the Kanani area is one of the worst for turtle poaching, our conservation and community work needs to be conducted in a tactful fashion. Simply storming in with the police in tow and pointing out whom the ‘baddies’ are, is not the way forward and would lead to an escalating situation between LOT and the fishermen with the turtles paying the ultimate price. Instead, LOT Community Liaison Officers Sammy and Athman work closely with the fishermen to show them why turtles are needed in the marine environment and that there are not many left.
Looking into the effects for hatchlings.
Sea turtles rely on both marine and terrestrial habitats during their life cycles. Because of this, climate change can have a significant impact on the sea turtle population. Increase in global temperature has been projected to lead to a rise in the sea level which might lead to loss of sea turtles nesting beaches.
The turtle that we just can't stop talking about!
We’ve had over 11,000 sea turtle releases since we started our turtle by-catch program. Over the years, we have seen so many turtles with interesting and unique body features. A few weeks ago, we came across a juvenile turtle unlike any other we have ever rescued and released. This was because the turtle had a combination of physical characteristics which suggest that the turtle may have been a cross between a green and hawksbill turtle.
The happy story of young Hawksbill
Sasha is a young Hawksbill turtle that came into our rehabilitation centre tangled in discarded fishing nets. This video tells her story.
A quick stop in our Rehabilitation Centre and then back to the ocean!
This Hawksbill Turtle has spent the last 36 hours in our Rehabilitation Centre. The turtle was covered in barnacles, it's underside was the worst affected but they were also on the top of the carapace, head and flippers. We kept the turtle in fresh water to loosen the barnacles and then gave it a good clean up before setting it free from a beautifully sunny Watamu beach today.
Young Hawksbill Recovering from Ghost Net Injuries
This young Hawksbill Turtle is the second 'ghost net' victim to be admitted to our Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre within a week. This video shows it enjoying some prawns in the tank.
A Quick Recovery By Recent Ghost Net Victim
The Hawksbill Turtle that came to us last week, recovered very quickly. The very active turtle was released over the weekend back to the Indian Ocean.
Discarded fishing nets, known as 'ghost nets' are a worldwide problem and cause many fatalaties in a variety of marine animals. This little Hawksbill, tangled in 3kg of ghost netting, was very lucky to be found by LOT team member Lewa on one of his early morning beach patrols. The turtle was able to recover from the bruising and regain strength in our Rehabilitation Centre before being released from Watamu beach.
Another Victim of Ghost Nets
This Hawksbill turtle was found by one of our nest monitors, Lewa, on his early morning beach patrol. The turtle was tangled in a large amount of discarded fishing nets. The nets had also entangled a sack which was full of sand and a substantially sized branch. This totalled nearly 3kg of weight for the turtle to drag around.
11,158 turtle releases and counting ....
We love being able to share with you the special moment when we are able to release turtles back to the ocean. It's an everyday occurence for us here at Local Ocean Trust but that doesn't make it any less of a magical experience every time. This recent release from Watamu beach on a lovely sunny day was a juvenille Hawksbill turtle. This is a critically endangered species and each one we are able to release back into the ocean makes a huge difference in reduce the decline of Hawksbill turtle populations.
Check out this video of our 11,158th release!
First Day of Service
Today the dream became a reality and the new car went out for its first day on the job and didn't have much time to rest as 9 turtes needed our help. Amazingly the first turtle that needed to be rescued was none other than three flippered Captain Hook.
All the info on the 2nd quater of the year.
The LOT education programme is a great way for students to learn about the marine environment. University students on internships with us, those seeking work experience or those doing their Duke of Edinburgh award have been tremendously inspired and have gained skills relevant to their course. We are very proud of the students who spend time with us at the project and understand the need to conserve our oceans and proceed to create awareness back at school.