Sea turtles in Senegal thriving during Covid pandemic #shorts
Guardian, 23 Nov 2021
Sea turtles on the sandy shores of western Senegal have made a rapid comeback because of quieter beaches during the coronavirus pandemic.
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With less activity and less light from the nearby hotels, more turtles have come to lay their eggs on the beach in the villages like Guéréo.
Fifteen turtles nested on Guéréo's beach last season, up from just two the previous year.
Turtle nests are appearing in greater numbers than ever before along West Africa's shores.
Increased fishing, tourism and construction have deterred Senegal's three species of turtle, all of which appear on International Union for Conservation of Nature's (IUCN) Red List.
And while they have appeared in greater numbers than ever before due to the Covid pandemic, all species of turtles in Senegal and in the world remain threatened and endangered.
Charlotte Thomas, a turtle researcher at the Oceanium marine conservation organisation in Dakar, says; "turtles play the role of ocean cleaner. They regulate marine algae by eating them, and marine algae is depended upon by lot on other species such as tuna, lobster and shrimp. If these turtles were to disappear, that would create an imbalance in the food chain and threaten the entire ecosystem."
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