LABUAN – Concerted efforts to boost the turtle population are bearing fruit after 9, 543 of hatchlings were released into the wild from the four landing sites in Labuan since between 2011 and 2015.
The number was of the 10, 450 eggs hatched or 98.01 per cent of the hatchlings.
One of the three marine parks of Rusukan Besar Island became the most strategic landing place for two turtles of hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys Imbricata) and green turtle (Chelonia Mydas) with 4, 857 eggs lays on the beach throughout the period.
Department of Malaysia Marine Park Labuan director Anuar Deraman the department recorded a total of 3, 506 eggs lays on Rusukan Kecil Island, followed by Kuraman Island with 2, 206 eggs and Kiansam (ungazetted marine park) with 231 eggs.
“Overall, the life percentage of the hatched eggs increased every year since 2011…Our efforts to conserve turtles by hatching their eggs and releasing the hatchlings into the sea since five years ago are succeeding,” he said to Bernama Friday.
Anuar said at least 20 nests recorded every year with a total average of three parent turtles had landed on the four beaches.
“The strategic landing sites, with no beach erosion are the factor behind the increased number of turtles landing,” he said.
He said the experienced and well-trained of rangers in handling the eggs during the transfer of the eggs to the hatchery also helped the increased release of the hatchlings into the sea.
Anuar also said Malaysia Maritime Enforcement Agency Labuan (MMEA) was working closely to monitor the illegal activities within the waters of marine parks.
He said the turtle conservation and protection exercise in the marine parks could be transformed into an eco-tourism product of Labuan to support the efforts of Labuan Corporation and Tourism Ministry.