PHANG NGA (NNT) - Leatherback sea turtles have been laying eggs at Bang Sak Beach in Phang Nga’s Takua Pa district after a 20 year absence.

The Chief District Officer, acting sub lieutenant Akepongsak Wettayawong recently led related officers to ensure the well-being of the leatherbacks, after local people reported the return of the long missing turtles.

The officers located an egg hole and dug up the eggs as the egg hole was located too close to tree roots which can be too cold for eggs to incubate.
Of the 58 eggs found, 36 were deemed to be good eggs and another 22 unfertilized eggs.

The officers dug a new hole in a more appropriate spot near the original hole and installed a thermometer before burying the eggs again.
Guards have been assigned to secure the hole 24 hours a day.

Mr. Rern Hantalay, the local resident who first noted the apparent return of the leatherbacks, said today that he saw traces of the turtles activities when he was going out to fish; he immediately reported the presence of the turtles to the authorities.

Rern added that as far as he recalls, it has been some 20 - 30 years since the last time he was aware of sea turtles laying eggs in sandy Bang Sak Beach.

National News Bureau Of Thailand