Cocos monitors turtles

Chief ranger Ismail Macrae taking a boat load of hawksbill turtles to be weighed and measured

We’ve completed sea turtle monitoring on the Cocos Islands, with more than 210 turtles tagged and processed over two weeks. This was well over our target of 120 turtles. Hawksbill and green turtles are caught from the boat and brought onboard to tag, weigh, measure and check gender as part of a national data set.

This year we recaptured 15 turtles that we’ve surveyed before, including one that was tagged 10 years ago.

Recaptures help the study determine the size of the population, as well as valuable data on feeding and nesting locations.

We’ve been studying the turtles since 1999. The turtle monitoring is a big event on Cocos and school students, tourists and locals get involved to help out and learn.

Trish, Pulu Keeling National Park