Turtles are not tortoises. They look the same but have many different qualities. Tortoises live in freshwater such as rivers and streams, where turtles live in solid. When they have to face danger, a tortoise can go into its shell with legs in, but a turtle can walk away. They cannot move their components in. Not only is that, but also tortoises smaller than the turtles. Some people seem to misunderstand these two. If we think more, no one goes tortoise watching in their tours, but the turtles.
This kind of species has over two hundred million years of history. No matter how many, we must remember that six of the seven species of these animals are on the red list today. Our actions are the reason for these problems. The nets and also the lines used to fish by men are the biggest problem for them. Also, there is a valuable trend in the world for their shells, as well as for the eggs. Therefore people are trying to kill turtles and steal their eggs too. Most of the countries are thinking of developing so that they tend to concrete the places where these animals used to nest. Plastics kill the others.
However, people love to see them. Most of the tourists are hurrying to see how they look like, how they nest, how the small ones look like, what they eat, how they swim, etc. in their own eyes. It is the same in Sri Lanka too. Therefore the turtle hatchery in Sri Lanka has become a large business. Due to the sea, which covers the whole country, Sri Lanka is a perfect place to watch and review them. There are many areas, such as Hikkaduwa, Kosgoda, Bentota, and Trincomalee for this purpose.
The kinds we find in Sri Lanka
Altogether there are seven, but only five can be seen here. One of them is the Leatherback. We can say that this kind is old, more than one million years. They are the largest of them. The next one is the Green kind. They are a bit smaller than the first one. They only eat algae. The Loggerheads have large heads following their names. Moreover, hawksbills are small. Not only that, its funny beak made the reptile beautiful. The last one is the Olive Ridley. They are smaller and weigh only a hundred pounds. In addition, they are very much abundant but are vulnerable.
The life circle we see
Their life is not very hard to remember. They live in the deep sea freely and do not come out until they get young. After that, the reptiles grow a bit more in the seashores. When they are ready to nest, they come to the beach. This happens in the early morning most of the time. They dig a deep pit with the tail they have and put the eggs in. After that, they close it in the same way. Usually, a female put about a hundred eggs for a time. The female goes back, and after some time, the eggs crack, and small babies come out. They go back to the deep sea and start to grow up.
There are about twenty places here for the hatchery. The location in Kosgoda had started in 1981. You can easily see all kinds of turtles near this beach area.
This place does many things to save turtles. They try to protect the eggs and pay special attention to babies. There you will see many small turtles swimming in the tanks. They are adorable to look at. You can even touch one or take one of them into your palm and cuddle. The babies will not hurt you. They can understand if you love them, and they feel what is in your mind. You can check it with one of your rude friends. Let a person who has ugly thoughts put one of the turtles into his palm. You will see the reptile is trying to crawl fast with its legs and entirely trying to jump away from the palm. Yes, they can understand you.
If you and your team are thinking of visiting the turtle hatchery Kosgoda on your tour, it is better to call them and make a booking. They will arrange your time, and also they will ready for a lecturer or a guide. They do it free. So, do not worry. If not, you can go in and ask the people there to describe. They will surely arrange a full lecture and try to give you knowledge practically. The only thing is that this place may be crowded at the time you go.
Bentota is one of the best places too. You can see little ones in one day old in there. One important thing that we would like to emphasize about this place is that it is amicable and has a large area. Not only you but also the kids in your team can get fun as well as knowledge in there.
There you will get to know about the routine of these places. The workers have to go on a daily trip to the sea at night. That ia because they have to recognize the pregnant mothers who are about to nest in that night. If they realized, then they hurry to protect her from any other dangers until she finishes and goes back. After that, the staff brings those eggs into the hatchery because if another harming animal has come and eaten them, everything will be finished. Bentota turtle hatchery gives advantages to the fishermen in the area too. If they bring eggs to the place, they will be paid.
After collecting, the workers keep the eggs carefully in a warm place. After they crack and the babies are out, they will be put into a tank. It will take about fifty to sixty days. The staff will look for any circumstances whether the babies can survive or not. If they look good, the team let the babies go back to the sea again. They try to release them as soon as possible because if they are cuddled by humans too much, that will be not good for their lives in the sea.
Watch them on the shore
It is known that the best place to enjoy turtle watching in Sri Lanka is Rekawa. Many teams try to go there every day and night too. But the problem is that these humans, the mothers, and babies and also the eggs can be damaged.
Swim with them
If you are good at diving, you can go to a turtle swimming visit. The best places for this thing are Mirissa, Dalawella, and Hikkaduwa. The first one is called the “Turtle Bay” because it is that much better for a visit. The visiting area of water in there is a bit muddy with sand, but more close to the land.
Dalawella is near to Unawatuna. Here the water looks clear. It is better to dive from the middle because there the water seems calm. You can see many more turtles swimming here and there freely.
Hikkaduwa is alright, but the place is bustling. Therefore you will be disturbed more.
However, swim with turtles in Sri Lanka will give you a memorable experience with salty water in your tongue.