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Kodi Beach in Karnataka is a turtle nesting site that keeps trawlers away

Conservationists are increasingly calling for Kodi Beach in Kundapur to be designated as a turtle nesting hotspot. While they hope to see more Olive Ridley turtle nesting sites on the beach this year, the deaths of two sea turtles in Kundapur in a week have marine conservationists concerned. One of the major concerns is that trawling is taking place near the shore. Only if the government declares the area a turtle nesting hotspot will conservation efforts gain traction.

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Kodi Beach, India, and forest department personnel The turtle had come to lay eggs; unfortunately, the turtle may have been hit by a fishing vessel’s propeller, resulting in its death. Reefwatch experts conducted the postmortem examination. Approximately 124 eggs were recovered and safely transferred to a beach hatchery. He stated that volunteers and department personnel will monitor the hatchery around the clock until the last egg hatches and the hatchlings reach the sea.

Bharath Bangera, a volunteer with the Clean Kundapura Project, which cleans up the Kodi beach every Sunday, told TOL last week that a gravid sea turtle was discovered dead, and its fertile eggs were safely kept in a hatchery by FSL volunteers.

Another turtle washed up on the beach in Beejadi. However, because the turtle was decomposing, a postmortem could not be performed. Trawling is taking place near the shore rather than in the deep sea. The marine fauna can be saved if the area is protected, as it is a sea turtle nesting hotspot.

Volunteers have been monitoring marine activity since 2019, including FSL India volunteers who spend sleepless nights on beaches protecting the hatcheries, as stated by Banger. Sea turtles are an important link in marine ecosystems, contributing to the health of coral reefs and seagrass beds, causing the department to consider creating a turtle conservation reserve. The work has already begun in order to protect and conserve sea turtles in Kundapur, as stated by Uday Nayak, deputy conservator of forests for Kundapur.

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