October starts to Monsoon

As monsoon starts to roll in, only a few nests still remain unhatched and the nesting season has ended by a month already.

Total nesting for this year was 73, from all beaches and species combines; compared to 44 nests in 2012.

We are still open for volunteering guests, however the work is less and won’t include working with any nesting turtles until next season starting around March or April.  We can still use help with visitor awareness, taking care of resident turtle JO, working on the buildings pictured below, any projects that you may have in mind, and other odd jobs around the place.

Juara bay as monsoon starts to roll in
Juara bay as monsoon baby starts to roll in
Some early monsoon waves breaking
Some early monsoon waves breaking in front of the hatchery
One of the last remaining nests hatching, only a couple more to go..
One of the last remaining nests hatching, only a couple more to go..

 

New rooms being built by the staff and volunteers
A couple new rooms being built by the staff and volunteers
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Two new rooms for teachers or independent research, and one new staff housing

 

September, a few photos

UWC students, tourists and volunteers gathering for a baby release
UWCSEA students, tourists and volunteers gathering for a baby release on Mentawak Beach, Juara
Feeding Jo cabbage
Jo getting fed some cabbage
Preparing some fresh chickens for dinner
Preparing some fresh chickens for dinner
A new nest, sponsored as a b-day present
A newly hatched nest, sponsored as a birthday present by a visitor
A nest excavation and inspecting old eggs
A nest excavation and inspecting old eggs out on the beach
A couple babies from a nest exavation
A couple of rescued babies from a nest excavation
Preparations for dinner
Some preparations for dinner to find the tastiest part of the cat…

Recent Photos July ’13

The nest sponsorship program here has been doing exponentially better.  All nests have sponsors now and we are even taking pre-bookings for sponsoring nests.  Even when the sponsors are told that we may not get more nests.. they have still been interested to sponsor anyway.  If necessary, we are planning to tribute the last nest to all the remaining sponsors at the end of the season.

Some lovely visitors from Sweden watching a few evening babies head out to sea.
Some lovely visitors from Sweden watching a few evening babies head out to sea.

Again, this program is great because it will hopefully show a direct source of income to residents, deriving from the sea turtles but not damaging to their species survival.

This year the sponsorship amount has been rm200, next year we may brave raising it to actually compete with the black market cost of about rm3-4 per egg, thus really showing a financial advantage for protecting eggs over selling them for consumption.

A nest just hatching and volunteers getting ready to collect and record on the babies
A nest just hatching and volunteers getting ready to collect and record on the babies

 

Viewing the Egg Hatchery
Viewing the Egg Hatchery

 

Trying to rehab a baby turtle
Trying to rehab a baby green turtle

This baby was released just the other day.   Our intentions, after finding it buried and weak inside a already hatched nest, were to see if it could get stronger before its release.  Unfortunately it did not get any stronger or better at swimming.  So we released it anyway recently when Charlie, Alex and Angie went around the Tioman Island doing a nest survey.

On our way to Coral Island ( Pulau Tulai ) we let it go where we know there is a strong current. We did this because at this point in its life (2 months) it would naturally already be at the ‘floating in currents’ stage.

Jo going back to her tank after having breakfast out
Jo going back to her tank after having a nice breakfast out

 

again ?
Not sure whats in the bowl.. its not turtles

 

i dont know whats in the bowl
This young star is a friend of ours from Juara that is always a big help at the project

 

Feeding some cabbage to Jo
Feeding some cabbage to Jo

 

Some lucky children visiting just at the right time to get some on-on-one with the babies as they get released
Some lucky children visiting just at the right time to get some on-on-one with the babies as they get released

 

A nest sponsored kindly by Marcus and Dotta, heading out to sea
A nest sponsored kindly by Marcus and Dotta, heading out to sea

 

baby turtles!!
baby turtles!!

 

Volunteers and staff keeping watch over the departing babies
Volunteers and staff keeping watch over the departing babies

 

a baby taking its bearings to find the ocean
a baby taking its bearings to find the ocean

There is availability for volunteering starting in the second half of August.  Let us know if you are interested.. Thank you

Reef Check Surveys

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The survey team (minus Simon from Riverview Chalets)

For a few months we have been setting up new survey areas with Reef Check Malaysia (linked here) .  They have trained us to their methods and now we can perform surveys here, and have the data sent to them for international comparisons.

Scuba diving on Tioman has been popular for a long time, but now is a good chance to help develop documentation of what is here, as there is a definite decrease of marine life occurring, most noticeably (besides Turtles…) are fish populations.   We will be offering the opportunity for involvement in these studies and surveys, after this preliminary groundwork is done.

 

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A view of the transect (survey) line, measured out every 1m, for 100m total

This survey dive trip was done with Charlie, Ali B, and Richard from Swiss Cottage in Tekek, our other team member Simon was out sick unfortunately.  Currently the surveys are being done on the East coast of Tioman, where as Reef Check themselves are conducting surveys on the busier West coast.

For us, this is another step towards the research and conservation of Tioman, and heavy eco-tourism concepts of enjoying nature the way it is and giving back to its well being.

 

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Surveyors taking notes on their observations

 

When you dive at Tioman please do your research first and dive with environmental friendly and responsible operators!

We dive with Tioman Dive Centre  (website here) or TDC who are at Swiss Cottage in Tekek.  They give us a great deal for the gear we use for survey work, and we know that diving with them on Tioman means enjoyment and sustainable.

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The transect line passing through some corals

 

Some waving soft corals
Some waving soft corals

 

A fishes view of the survey..
And a fishes view of the survey..    Check back with us soon to get involved or help with a group.

 

Updates for June

There are more nesting turtles than last year, so far we have received as many nests as last year already.  This is great, but you must remember it is unfortunately not the result of any new regulations put in place, or better beach protection, or better marine enforcement.. that is still to come.  We are just glad to know that there are some turtles still out there, and we are protecting their babies in hope of a better/ more survivable,  world for them in the future.

Some interns have arrived from Malaysian University UMT and will be here on placement for two months, then another shift arrives.

Our booking is quite full for July and August but if know what dates you are interested to come you can still ask, maybe you can fit in or we can let you know when is available.

Lots of nest sponsorship’s, this is a great program where we are trying to show a positive income by people ‘paying’ for the nests to be protected, instead of people paying for the eggs to be sold/ eaten.  Hopefully the idea can pass on in the future (if) after we are gone.

Re-nesting in the hatchery
Re-nesting in the hatchery
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Late night release
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Goodbye to the babies
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Turtle release beach party
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Thanks for the nest sponsorship
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Advertising a new opportunity for Riverview’s guests
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A new patrol boat that charlie has been working on

Photos from March to April

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Filling up Jo’s Tank!
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UWC girls taking a lesson in re-nesting turtle eggs.
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Getting the layout from Charles for a new signboard
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Izzati hanging out with Dilia from the new Coconut Grove Resort, Juara Tioman
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A view from morning beach patrol… a reason to get up for the 6am shift
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Volunteer Ingrid painting up new lamp shades for Lagoon, to help keep light off the beach
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The new look for the Turtle Boat, still named Will Smith. Red was Izati’s idea..
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Yeah! The Juara Primary School for an afternoon program on recycling and being good to the environment, also helping to practice English.
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Some of the regulars visiting Kg Mukut for the afternoon.
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Kelly and Jos working out some new turtle signs for guests at local resorts
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Clearly cooking
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Jos and Kelly still working the turtle signs, in the new Lab Space

UWC Project Week

Thanks to the young ladies from UWCSEA who came her for their project week trip.  They left us with an important new information signboard, and helped while here on all sort of activities and projects.  Also joining up with Little Planet for some sea kayak training.

In answer to one of our unfortunately commonly asked questions…

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the general sea turtle life cycle…

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and why its important not to keep any baby turtles around…

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And they cleverly brought us a stuffed tiger, which we can actually use in the banana trees to scare away monkeys!

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Thanks girls.  Hope to see you again soon..