BUSY SEASON: Staff on Lady Elliot Island run a turtle-monitoring program keeping count of turtle tracks, nests and hatchlings.
BUSY SEASON: Staff on Lady Elliot Island run a turtle-monitoring program keeping count of turtle tracks, nests and hatchlings. Contributed

It's a great year for green turtles

QUEENSLAND Parks and Wildlife Service rangers have reported a spike in green turtle numbers this nesting season.

Lady Elliot Island staff have certainly noticed the increase.

Jessica Blackmore, an activities supervisor at the island's eco resort, said it was exciting to see the numbers of turtles coming in to nest.

 

Turtles are expected to nest well into March and possibly April.
Turtles are expected to nest well into March and possibly April. Contributed

"We thought this year might be a big one and it has been," she said.

Island staff have recorded 103 green turtle nests.

Last season there were 81 and the season before only 15.

The turtles on Lady Elliot lay their eggs right on the resort's doorstep.

"Hatchlings turn everybody to mush," Jessica said.

"The odds are so stacked against them - only one in one thousand reaches sexual maturity."

Queensland Department of Environment and Science's Dr Colin Limpus said turtle nesting varied each year.

He said a higher number of nests this season was a result of reduced rainfall in 2016.



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