These photos are from a personal project photographing the release of three green turtles into the wild, from the beach at The Bight Children’s Park on Grace Bay, Providenciales.
Green turtles are protected when on land in Turks & Caicos but can be captured by fishermen quite legally captured when in the ocean, so keeping track of the population is important to maintain a balance between the needs of the species and those of humans.
These three turtles (named Roco, Vasy and Trey) came from two nests found on Providenciales and Grand Turk in November 2010. Since then they have been looked after by staff at the Turks & Caicos Conch Farm, including former production manager Eiglys Trejo, who was on hand to take part in the release.
The turtles will be monitored by the UK-based Marine Conservation Society and the Turks & Caicos’ Department of Environmental and Maritime Affairs.
Amdeep Sanghera, project officer for the Turks and Caicos Turtle Project explained to a group of local schoolchildren that the hope is that these three turtles will not only survive in the ocean but come back in 30 years time to breed on the beaches of Turks & Caicos and complete the cycle.
You could see the excitement on the faces of the children as they were allowed to hold the young turtles briefly before the animals were released to scuttle down the beach into the inviting depths of the ocean. Each animal wears a tag on its flipper so it can be identified next time it comes into contact with humans.