News

‘Grand old lady’ makes 645km trip in four weeks

The world's oldest tagged turtle arriving at Mon Repos for her 13th nesting.
The world's oldest tagged turtle arriving at Mon Repos for her 13th nesting. Contributed

A 60-YEAR-OLD turtle known as the grand old lady of Mon Repos has thrilled scientists by travelling nearly 650km up the Queensland coast.

The flatback - the world's longest-studied marine turtle - was tracked from Bundaberg to feeding grounds in Repulse Bay, north-west of Mackay.

The travel secrets of the turtle - known as X23103 - were unlocked by a transmitter which provided researchers with a satellite record of her post-breeding migration.

"It really is an incredible journey by the grand old lady," Environment Minister Steven Miles said.

"We know she left Mon Repos on December 10, and t

ravelled 645km before arriving in Repulse Bay on January 7.

"During her 28-day journey she hugged the coast from Mon Repos to Gladstone and north to Byfield, then striking out into deeper water, through the Percy Islands and Cumberland island groups, before stopping at Repulse Bay just south of the Whitsundays," Dr Miles said.

"She's been foraging there in a fairly small area for the last six weeks, and it will be interesting to see where she goes next.

"We are following her travels over 4-5 months while the transmitter remains attached," he said.

The Queensland Government's turtle research program has been monitoring the "grand old lady' since 1974 - at the beginning of her breeding life, when she would have been about 21.

Department of Environment and Heritage Protection Chief Scientist Dr Col Limpus said that over the 41 years she'd been studied, the turtle had been recorded in 15 seasons, coming ashore to lay on 72 occasions, always on the 1.6km of Mon Repos Beach.

"She laid four clutches (this season), starting with a clutch of 30 eggs on October 17, and all four of those clutches have hatched," Dr Limpus said.

Topics:  bundaberg, editors picks, mon repos, southern barrier reef, turtle




Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

3 easy dinner recipes your kids will love, and so will you

No Caption

THERE is a middle ground! Dinners fit for kids and adults.

How to reduce your child's risk of food allergies

ABOUT 90% of food allergies are caused by just seven foods.

5 good mental health habits for kids (and parents)

CRYING OUT FOR HELP: The demand for counselling support for children and young people is increasing.

FORMING good habits early is critical for your child's mental health.

Smack or no smack - where do you stand?

THE debate is reignited - is smacking acceptable?

Susie O'Neill: Why I stopped smacking my children

Swimming legend Susie O'Neill says she has stopped smacking her kids.

“I (smacked) because that’s what I knew growing up."

Introducing a step-parent into the family

Introducing a step-parent into the family can be stressful for the children, as well as the new parent.

THERE is no easy way to introduce a step parent into the family.

Impact: thirty-six graduate with skills to work

Mary Anne and Andrew

36 students have graduated from Impact Community Services programs

Man accused of raping 14-year-old girl

Trial of man accused of raping daughters friend has begun

Latest deals and offers

Darren Pratt Local Farmer

LOCALLY GROWN: Darren Pratt with his box of fresh local produce.Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail

LOCALLY GROWN: Darren Pratt with his box of fresh local produce.

Justice Lucy McCallum

Justice Lucy McCallum

Justice Lucy McCallum says she reduced Oliver Curtis's sentence due to comments...

Perisher has 50cm of snow

Resort to open after 50cm of snow.

Smiggin Holes and Blue Cow to open after 50cm of snaow falls in Perisher valley.

Is this state’s cheapest house?

BARGAIN BUY: Is this North Bundaberg property the cheapest home in Queensland?

Becoming a real estate mogul is all about risk and reward

CHEAP AS CHIPS: 6 Bundy houses under $199,000

Cheap houses being sold in the region