Cousine Island – Seychelles – Indian Ocean
On the 12 th of December 2009, Cousine Island received 10 additions to the tortoise family.
2 tortoises were donated by a couple who repatriated back to South Africa and wanted their ‘babies’ to have a safe and happy home. The other 8 tortoises were donated by Gerhard and Chanel Buckholz who live on Eden Island. Upon arrival the tortoises settled into their new environment by tucking into the vegetation on the dune crest and ‘socializing’ with the old tortoises. The tortoises are currently being weighed and measured so that we have accurate data for each one.
Of the 114 Hawksbill Turtle emergences during December, 42 resulted in nests with 5450 eggs being laid. This brings the total number of nests up to 86 by the end of December, a new record by 13 nests. It is also the highest number of nests ever recorded in a single month. 27 Females have been tagged so far this season with 12 of them tagged in December alone, a total of 58 individual females were recorded on the beach. During December 10 nests hatched and 1472 hatchlings were released to sea, bringing to total number of hatchlings safely released to the sea to 2022 so far during this season.
Five Hawksbill Turtles have been returned to the Seychelles after their eggs were illegally taken out the country by a tourist last year.
The little hatchlings made their way back home in mid December to end a story which has captured world attention, especially in Germany, where the tourist was intercepted during transit.
The five eggs were seized by custom officers at Frankfurt airport, who immediately handed them over to the Federal Agency of Natural Conservation. They later hatched at the Frankfurt Zoo where they were cared for until their repatriation.
In December 2009 the turtles were brought back to the Seychelles and released on Christmas Day. It is unknown from where the eggs were taken. Source: Seychelles Tourism Board
Karl Phillips, a PhD student from the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom, is joining the conservation team this season to assist with the turtle monitoring. Karl will be analysing the DNA samples collected over the last 2 seasons from the female Hawksbill Turtles, as well as from the sampled hatchlings in order to determine more information on these wonderful creatures.
The Conservation team has a new member to their office. Squeaker joined them on the 14 th of December at less than a week of age. The little Seychelles Fruit Bat was found mid-afternoon desperately clinging to the roof of one of the apartments and was taken in. Weighing only 73 grams at the time, Squeaker has been bottle fed on milk with a bit of added sugar and now weighs 110 grams. The affectionate little guy loves nothing more than a warm hand to lie in with a bottle of milk in the mouth and a good scratch on the head.
The Seychelles White-eyes have managed to successfully fledge 3 chicks, 2 from the territory on the hill and 1 from the territory close to the spa. The smaller of the 2 chicks on the hill was slightly weaker than the other and unfortunately spent more time on the ground than in branches, a dangerous place to be for such a small fledgling. He was temporarily placed in a fledgling cage for 3 nights until he was strong enough to fly from perch to perch. The cage allows the fledgling to practise his flying and perching skills with the adults able to feed it through the netting and at the same time the cage keeps it safe from any predators. This chick has been closely monitored since its release is regularly seen flying about with its sibling and the adults.
Valentines package: Spend 5 nights in a romantic Cousine Villa and enjoy dining experiences such as a Creole Buffet, Seafood BBQ with bonfire on the beach and sunset drinks, Candle-light dinner on the Villa terrace and a picnic lunch at the North view point. Offer also includes complimentary bottle of French champagne & tropical fruit basket; return helicopter transfers from Mahe or Praslin onboard a Helicopter Seychelles aircraft; 1 full day cruising with the Sunseeker Superhawk 43; a 3 island excursion; St Barth LORIENT spa package per person and a exclusive tree planting experience with the island ecologists!
Valid 01 to 27 February 2010 inclusive
For more information about these special offers please contact us.
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