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May 20th 2009 Bonaire- Eden's Rubble


Diving at Bonaire often results in turtle encounters. During May and June, turtles come to shore to lay their eggs, and with Roeland of Wannadive I discussed the work of “Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire”.

Some days after our talk I dived Eden’s Rubble. At the end of the afternoon dive at I spotted a female hawksbill turtle resting at approximately 9 m. Because I noticed a very remarkable spot at the back of the turtle, I decided to take some pictures which could be of use to the Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire. Having only a macro lens on the camera, no pictures could be taken of the turtle “in total”, as she covered a length about 70 cm. After looking at me, the turtle swam quietly further on, on her way grabbing some bits from the rubble. Besides the spot on the back, this turtle had another ID: Wahoo! she was tagged on the left front flipper! The tags on the right were rusted and gone. Taking pictures of the tag, the turtle swam deeper till 16 m and I had to decide to end my dive (after diving over an hour before spotting her).

 

 


 

 



Back at Wannadive I discussed this encounter with Roeland. It seems like this turtle was last seen at the same location 2 years before, being significantly smaller at the time.

Let’s hope this beauty will visit Bonaire again in future and that any sightings will help to analyse turtle behaviour and thus contributes the conservation of these massive creatures.

 

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