Saturday, May 30, 2009

Crazy Turtle Lady

That's what many people call Suzan Lakhan Baptiste who has worked to save the leatherback sea turtle on Trinidad's Matura Beach. Every year, female leatherbacks return to the beach where they lay their eggs. They dig deep holes to deposit the eggs, a long difficult process that leaves them easy prey for poachers who kill them for meat, fins and eggs.

By the 1980s, nearly one in three turtles that nested on Matura Beach were killed. When the government asked for volunteers to help protect the endangered creatures, Baptiste stepped forward with several other people. They patrol the beach during the mating season to protect the turtles from poachers, and their efforts have been successful. Now, the leatherbacks are able to come to the beach to lay eggs and close to 100 percent of them survive.

What a wonderful accomplishment, and certainly worth remembering when we think that one or two people cannot affect a problem.

2 comments:

Helen Ginger said...

That is a great accomplishment. We seem to be becoming more aware of how we're destroying some species. Since turtles have been a favorite of mine since I had one as a child, I'm glad to see we're doing more. I noticed while in Florida recently that along the beach there were signs that lights had to be turned down during the time when the turtles come to shore to lay eggs.

Helen
Straight From Hel

Maryann Miller said...

That is so cool, Helen. Like you, I am so glad that more people are stepping up to protect the creatures that bring us such pleasure.