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Human wall created to guide turtles to sea

July 6, 2013 at 11:05 AM   |   Comments

KRALENDIJK, Netherlands, July 6 (UPI) -- Conservationists on the Dutch-owned Caribbean island of Bonaire said they made a human wall to help guide just-hatched baby loggerhead turtles to the sea.

Loggerhead turtles hatched all across Bonaire Monday and began crawling toward water, ABC News reported.

One group needed a little help finding its way, Dr. Sue Willis, the program director of Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire, told ABC News.

"This group of baby turtles hatched on a beach next to an airport," Willis said. "After the turtles hatch they crawl toward the brightest light they see, which is usually the moon over the ocean. But the airport's bright lights distract the turtles and make them crawl in the wrong direction. Two years ago we lost an entire group of hatchlings after they crawled onto a busy road."

This year, Willis and a number of volunteers decided to help guide the 113 turtles, which are an endangered species, safely to the ocean.

"We created a human wall of sorts," Willis said. "We surround the baby turtles on both sides so that they cannot see the airport lights. We give them ample space to crawl and form a line all the way down to the ocean so they stay on path."

© 2013 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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