Friday, June 20, 2008

Olive ridleys.... hmmm..

One of the highlights of the May 08 Seasonal study was the discovery of a high number of olive ridley nests. Olive ridley nesting in the Australia and South Pacific region is relatively uncommon, with only the odd nest being laid around the northern Australian coastline throughout the year.
Our first couple of nights surveying beaches saw us come across some high density nesting areas from previous nights. Excited to see ridleys nesting you could imagine my disapointment when we didn't see an olive ridley on the whole trip! I think we had missed the nesting event which had probably taken place around the new moon. Overseas in areas like Costa Rica ridleys are known to all nest at once in mass nesting events known as 'Arribadas'. The tracks, eggs and nests we recorded were far from the numbers witnessed in Costa Rica but it could be a similar behaviour where a lot of nesting occurs on the right tide, on the right moon at the right time of the year... be interesting to look more into this during the April/ May eriod next year...

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