Annual guests and strong supporters of the Gnaraloo Turtle Conservation Program, the students and teachers of Nagle Catholic College, Geraldton, visited Gnaraloo last week. It was fantastic to meet such a bright bunch of upper high school students, who were giving their own time out of their holidays to participate with the GTCP on-site.
After a long journey from Geraldton, the group met the turtle team on Monday afternoon and received an informative presentation about marine turtles at Gnaraloo. The following morning (Tuesday) everyone was up bright and early to join the team on a Day Survey and test out their track interpretation skills.
There are plenty of nesting activities occurring most nights in Gnaraloo Bay Rookery at the moment, so it was great to demonstrate and teach some track interpretation skills for turtle Species Identification and Nesting Activity Determination.
Being super keen, the whole group also joined the research team on that evening’s Night Survey, which departed at 9pm. It was a great night, with all students observing three nesting loggerhead turtles. A bright moon was out for part of the survey so there was not too much stumbling around in the dark and the students got a clear view of eggs being deposited into the egg chamber.
The group again joined the Day Survey research team on Thursday morning to hone in their Species Identification skills and reinforce the program’s methodology; i.e. Night Survey verification of nesting activities for Day Survey team’s track interpretation.
It was a pleasure to meet the students and teachers of Nagle Catholic College; we wish you all a very happy festive season and look forward to seeing you in the New Year.
(Thanks to the chef’s for the tasty chicken fajita feast on Thursday night too!)