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Persistence pays off as first turtle nests at Mon Repos

EGGS LAID: Volunteers Diane Anderson, Caroline Robertson and Brian Robertson watch on as the first Flatback turtle of the season nests at Mon Repos. Photo Contributed
EGGS LAID: Volunteers Diane Anderson, Caroline Robertson and Brian Robertson watch on as the first Flatback turtle of the season nests at Mon Repos. Photo Contributed Contributed

IT MAY have taken her a few attempts, but the first turtle to successfully nest at Mon Repos this season has laid a first clutch of 77 eggs.

Mon Repos ranger-in-charge Cathy Gatley said she herself and two volunteers were patrolling the beach overnight Tuesday when they came across the 96.7cm Flatback.

"We've had three sets of Flatback tracks which have all been the same width so we assume this is the same turtle and this time she was successful," Ms Gatley said.

"Flatbacks usually lay between 50-60 eggs per clutch so 77 is a good full clutch for her first one of the season."

Ms Gatley said the Flatback started digging the first nest but struck a large tree root and had to start again.

"We let her settle in and then we were able to take measurements," she said.

"She laid in a good position right up high on the beach so we didn't have to relocate the eggs.

"This turtle has nested here at Mon Repos in previous seasons, as she was a tagged turtle QA9867."

Mrs Gatley said the timing was a great start before the turtle tours kick off on Monday.

"We open to the public for the turtle tours next week so to have a turtle already is a good sign."

To book your turtle encounter online, visit www.bookbundabergregion.com.au or phone 41538888.

Topics:  mon repos turtle



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