Saturday, July 20, 2024

COVID-19 Grants Leatherback Turtles Much Needed Reprieve


With the global lockdown preventing humans from venturing onto beaches around the world, baby leatherback turtles are flourishing.

A record number of nests was found on one beach in Thailand — 11 nests (the largest recorded in two decades, according to The Guardian newspaper). The effect is not local but global, with beaches across the world reporting excellent results for leatherback turtles.

The results in Thailand are particularly poignant since no nests were found around Phuket in the last five years. According to Kongkiat Kittiwatanawong, the director of the Phuket Marine Biological Center:

“This is a very good sign for us because many areas for spawning have been destroyed by humans.”

Commenting to CBS 12 about the good results coming out of Florida, David Godfery, the executive director of the Sea Turtle Conservancy said:

“The chances that turtles are going to be inadvertently struck and killed will be lower. All of the reduced human presence on the beach also means that there will be less garbage and other plastics entering the marine environment. Ingestion and entanglement in plastic and marine debris also are leading causes of injury to sea turtles.”

Sam Helmy
Sam Helmy
Sam Helmy is a TDI/SDI Instructor Trainer, and PADI Staff and Trimix Instructor. Diving for 28 years, a dive pro for 14, I have traveled extensively chasing my passion for diving. I am passionate about everything diving, with a keen interest in exploration, Sharks and big stuff, Photography and Decompression theory. Diving is definitely the one and only passion that has stayed with me my whole life! Sam is a Staff Writer for