Endangered Turtle discovers a runway has replaced her popular nesting ground
On an island in the Maldives, a turtle came ashore to lay her eggs to discover an airport runway had been built on the popular nesting site.
The turtle was discovered laying her eggs in the middle of the new Maldive airport runway. When we think of the Maldives we think of the paradisaical blue seas and unpolluted beaches, however for this poor turtle her nesting ground has been replaced by tarmac.
With this habitat loss, it illustrates why this species is listed as endangered by the IUCN. The Green Sea Turtle faces many obstacles when it comes to their eggs, with humans over harvesting them, and losing their nesting beach sites.
Sea turtles almost always return to the same beach where they were born to lay their eggs, even if this means a crazy multi-year journey, just to return to that same beach spot. What a mad journey to make to discover the beach spot is no longer...
Maafaru (the Maldive island) has a history of being a highly popular nesting ground for hundreds of turtles. Officials have said that since the runway has been built the frequency of turtle visits, and turtle numbers has not decreased. However, I'm sure we can all agree that tarmac is an impossible alternative to the beach as a nesting ground, and will cause Green Sea Turtle numbers to deplete rapidly.
Developers who completed the airport runway in August said there are further plans for buildings on the island, including a hotel and resort.
However, a bright side to this bleak situation is that the turtle is in good health, and was helped back to the ocean by locals.