The satellite image of Prathama, a female turtle shows that it has traveled a few nautical miles away from the Mumbai coast, if she continues to travel at the same pace, she is expected to enter Gujarat waters soon.
The satellite tagging of turtles on the west coast has yielded some fascinating results. According to Mangroves Cell data, female turtle Prathma has traveled 250 kilometers from Velas, female turtle Saavni has traveled 101 kilometers from Anjarle, Vanashree has traveled 74 kilometers from Guhagar, and Rewa has traveled 156 kilometers from Guhagar. There is a chance that one of the turtles will end up on the Gujarat coast.
The Mangrove Cell of the Maharashtra Forest Department has lost track of a female turtle Laxmi who was tagged on the 16th of February. The officials are skeptical that this inconvenience might have occurred due to the malfunctioning of the transmitter or the turtle may have died.
While the satellite image of the female turtle Prathama’s movement suggests that it has traveled a few nautical miles away from the Mumbai shore, if the journey continues, it may enter Gujarat waters. According to the perpendicular distance from the west coast seashore, Prathama is 86 kilometers from Dahanu, Saavni is 73 kilometers from Murud, Vanashree is 5 kilometers from Ganeshgule, and Rewa is 5 kilometers from Tondavali. The Wildlife Institute of India (WII), in collaboration with the Mangrove Foundation team and local forest officials, successfully monitored the tagging of five turtles.
Olive Ridley Sea Turtles: Olive Ridley Sea Turtles nest sporadically along the Maharashtra coast. Olive Ridley sea turtles have only been tagged on India’s east coast so far. This was the first Olive Ridley Sea Turtle satellite tagging effort on India’s western coast.
About Turtle Tagging: The Mangrove Foundation and the Maharashtra Forest Department have commissioned the WII to do a study on the migratory movements of Olive Ridley Sea Turtles off the coast of Maharashtra. This research will aid in the understanding of the Olive Ridley Sea Turtles’ migration patterns off the coast of Western India.
Two Olive Ridley Sea Turtles were satellite-tagged for the first time on the western coast of India on January 25, 2022, in the Ratnagiri district’s Velas and Anjarle. ‘Prathama’ and ‘Savani’ were their names. On February 15 and 16, 2022, three more female turtles were fitted with the satellite transmitter in Guhagar in the Ratnagiri district. ‘Vanashree,’ ‘Laxmi,’ and ‘Rewa’ were the names given to these three turtles.
The findings of this study will aid in the knowledge of the Olive Ridley sea turtle population on India’s western coast, as well as its movement patterns, feeding grounds, and behavior. More similar research activities are planned by the Mangrove Foundation and the Mangrove Cell Forest Department to boost Maharashtra’s turtle protection.