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TURTLE PATROL: Turtle deaths could have been avoided

A turtle nest with over 100 eggs hatched Saturday night, but many of the turtles became disoriented. The nest was located at the Public Beach in Cayman Brac.

“We knew this nest was due to hatch soon. Both Public Works and the District Administrator had been contacted for permission to turn off the lights at Public Beach for a few days. They told us we could turn off a few lights, those with outside switches, but Public Works locked access to the switches to turn off the brightest lights. Turning off a few lights doesn’t work, as the hatchlings will head for the remaining lights,” Bonnie Scott-Edwards said.

“There were 134 empty shells of which 33 were found alive and a very few tracks went to the sea.”

Mrs. Scott-Edwards also said 33 dead hatchlings were found. That means 68 are unaccounted for. She says they may be somewhere in the bush or they may have been carried off by crabs.

The turtle patrol group plans to release the live hatchlings tonight (Sunday, 29 July) after sunset.

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