Turtles are magnificent animals of prehistoric origins and appearance. The endangered Loggerhead turtle and the vulnerable Flatback turtle and Green turtle emerge annually from the ocean to nest on beaches of Queensland, Australia along the Woongarra Coast, especially at the world-renowned turtle rookery at Mon Repos.
What You Can Do
Producing the next generation of turtles is a lengthy process. Loggerhead turtles take 30 years to reach sexual maturity, after which females will only nest every 4-8 years. Although clutches may contain as many as 130 eggs, it’s estimated that as few as 1 in 1,000 hatchlings survive to adulthood.
Click below to see how you can help.
Making a Donation
Help us to help our sea turtles by making a donation.
YOUR DONATION WILL BE USED TO:
Work with community organisations and all levels of government to protect, conserve, monitor and manage endangered marine turtles
Help us to campaign to increase habitat protection on key beaches through increased vegetation to protect the dunes and provide appropriate shade.
To assist in securing additional funds from grants to ensure lighting in this region is appropriate, minimising impact on our environment.
Turtles of Mon Repos
Seven species of sea turtles exist in the world, three of these nest along the Woongarra coastline. Turtles are cold blooded, air breathing, egg laying reptiles dating back to the dinosaurs. In today’s society their ancient life cycle is of interest to researchers and visitors alike as these majestic turtles come ashore to lay their eggs.
Loggerhead turtles (Caretta Caretta) make up 90% of the turtles nesting along the Woongarra Coast. They are magnificent animals, large headed and reddish-brown in carapace colour. Loggerhead nesting at Mon Repos is crucial as it supports about 50% of nesting for the South Pacific Region.
The flatback turtle (Natator depressus) is a quite special Australian, as this large marine turtle is only known to nest in Australia and is only found in Australian waters and some nearby waters in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea
Although Mon Repos and surrounding beaches are not a main nesting beach for the green turtle each season we do have a couple make their way to this region to nest. Green turtles nest in larger numbers on the islands within the Great Barrier Reef.
What we do
It Starts with 1 - LIGHT
It Starts with 1 - BEACH
A new public awareness campaign to highlight how we can all help make a difference this turtle season has been launched by the Sea Turtle Alliance (STA) just in time for the 2020/2021 turtle season.
The campaign, funded by the Commonwealth Governments – Communities Environment Program (CEP), focuses on increasing public awareness of the nesting and hatchling phases of each turtle season on our beaches.
The first two phases has been the release of two videos for distribution via social media, schools and local media. These are the anchor points of the campaign and will be aimed at educating locals and visitors to the region.
Watch our videos to learn how we can all make a difference this turtle season.
Lighting Along our Shoreline
The Sea Turtle Alliance members, working with Bundaberg Regional Council, identified lighting issues at Nielson Park, Bargara and Oaks Beach, Burnett Heads and applied for funding to help implement improvements. Through a successful application with Ergon Energy we secured funding to retrofit lights to help reduce the light spill onto the beach (which disorientates hatchlings away from the ocean, leading to their untimely demise).
- Embracing the darkness, the turtle story – an evening with Dr Blair Witherington, Disney turtle researcher
The STA moderated a community meeting in Bargara with Dr Blair Witherington to help educate the public on the impact of lighting on our beaches. Over 60 residents, Councillors and turtle volunteers attended to hear Blair tell his story of the Florida Loggerheads, his worldwide turtle research experiences and how Florida has addressed the light issue.
Cut The Glow to help Turtles Go Campaign
Turtles need dark beaches if they are to survive. They cannot change their behaviour towards lights so it’s up to us to help maximise nesting success and hatchling survival.
Whether you are a community resident, visitor or business, you can help reduce the glow of lights affecting beaches in your local area.
During the breeding season from mid-October to April, you can help save our turtles by following some simple guidelines.
The Department of Environment and Science have published “Cut the Glow to help Turtles Go” which is a great information booklet providing lots of tips and hints to help Cut the Glow, so please take the time to be informed and assist our turtles in their breeding.
Shopping Centre Displays
The STA team love to share their passion for sea turtles and educating the public on what they can do is key to this. In July 2018, single-use plastic bags were banned from Queensland supermarkets. The STA were successfully in securing funding via the 2018 Reef Guardian Community and Stewardship Grants to undertake a public awareness campaign.
This campaign aimed not only to reduce plastic bag use, but to also encouraging people to reduce the use of ALL plastics.
Alternatives to plastics were also promoted so that a reduction in everyday use of plastic products could result in the amount of plastic and debris entering the marine environment.
The Sea Turtle Alliance conducted two successful shopping centre promotional activities at Hinkler Central in Bundaberg and at Bargara Central.
Date to be advised. If seafood ‘floats your boat’, don’t miss the saltiest event of 2019 – Oceanfest Bundaberg!
Held in the picturesque Port Marina precinct, Oceanfest Bundaberg focuses on quality, local seafood, local wines, local beers, themed entertainment and a range of ocean orientated attractions, displays, demonstrations and workshops for all members of the family.
This event promotes the local, wild catch seafood, harvested from the Southern Great Barrier Reef and Bundaberg waters. Developed by the Rotary Club of Bundaberg Sunrise, this event will demonstrate how proud the Bundaberg community is of our seafood industry, our tourism industry and the Bundaberg North Burnett area.
STA are pleased to have been chosen to be a beneficiary organization of Oceanfest for the past two years. Oceanfest is a community event held at the Bundaberg Port Marina by the Rotary Club of Bundaberg Sunrise. The STA has conducted community displays at this event and thanks to the donations received we have been able to utilise the funds to apply for grants and achieve our projects to date.
For more information about this community event visit https://www.oceanfestbundaberg.com.au/
TBA - OPENING of pgraded Mon Repos Turtle Centre
More details to come…
TBA - Rotary Oceanfest at Burnett Heads
More details to come…