Olive ridley turtles create new record of mass nesting at the Rushikulya rookery

  • According to the ‘The Hindu‘ newspaper, with 4,28,083 mother olive ridley turtles building nests till 26 February 2018, the endangered species has created a new record of mass nesting at the Rushikulya rookery coast in the Ganjam district of Odisha this year. 
  • Every year, a 3.5-kilometre-long stretch of the beach from Gokharkuda to Podampeta are fenced to stop predators from harming the olive ridleys during nesting and the eggs in their nests.
  • These endangered species flock the place every year from the third week of February to the first week of March for nesting.
  • Odisha (the Gahirmatha beach) is the largest mass nesting site for Olive Ridley in the world.

About Rushikulya rookery

  • Rushikulya rookery is a coast in Ganjam district of Odisha. 
  • Apart from Garhirmatha marine sanctuary in Kendrapara districtm, Rushikulya is also a mass nesting site for Olive Ridleys turtles.
  • Rushikulya is also a river which merges into the Bay of Bengal near Ganjam town. 

About Olive Ridley

  • IUCN Red list has kept Olive Ridleys in  vulnerable category. 
  • Its scientific name is Lepidochelys olivacea.
  • It is named for the generally greenish color of its skin and shell, or carapace.
  • Olive ridleys are found only in warmer waters, including the southern Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans.
  • It is known for their unique mass nesting called Arribada, where thousands of females come together on the same beach to lay eggs.
  • It is mostly carnivorous, feeding on such creatures as jellyfish, snails, crabs, and shrimp.
  • It’s life span is 50 years.

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