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Some good news for right now: the birth of 200 green turtles at Banyan Tree Samui.

On the southeastern tip of Koh Samui in the Gulf of Thailand, a giant mother turtle laid her eggs in late February and early March. They matured under the care of Banyan Tree Samui’s resident marine biologist, Thepsuda Loyjiw and the local Department of Marine and Coastal Resources. The hotel has a dedicated sustainability team and just last year, was singled out by  global watchdog EarthCheck for meeting the highest standards for environmentalism in the country.

“Ever since the mother turtle laid her eggs on our beach, we have been protecting them from predators such as birds and monitor lizards, and gauging the temperature of the eggs to make sure the hatchlings would be given every chance of survival.”

It’s rare for giant green turtles in Thailand to lay eggs close to a tourist area; where turtles usually seek out deserted bays in the Andaman Sea to make their nests. A highly possible reason for this particular mother turtle to choose the resort’s beach is the closure of hotels since the onset of Covid-19. Sheltered in a cove, flanked by coral reefs and isolated from Chaweng and Lamai, Banyan Tree Samui’s beach has never been a more safe space for animals.

Left: Banyan Tree Samui's CSR team had erected a fence around the turtle nests to protect the eggs from predators.  Right: Newborn green turtles begin life with an immediate sprint to the sea. (Image credit: Banyan Tree Samui)

In fact, news reports in Thailand have noted that marine life and wildlife have regenerated on many tourist hotspots since the crisis began. An increasing number of dugongs have been spotted close to Thai shores, and nests of rare leatherback turtles have been discovered in Phuket.

In April, the three nests began to hatch. Fully grown green sea turtles weigh between 110 kg and 180 kg while measuring about one meter in length. For now, the little hatchlings in their new life below:

Green Turtle Hatchlings at Banyan Tree Samui

More green turtle hatchlings recently surfaced and made their way to sea!The second nest – discovered on 24 February – produced 57 hatchlings and the third nest – discovered on 8 March – produced 53 hatchlings.An additional two nests remain on our private beach and we anticipate these nests to hatch in the coming week or two!Stay tuned for updates!Video courtesy of our associate: @Muenpromsan Kittipong

Posted by Banyan Tree Samui on Tuesday, April 28, 2020

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Diandra Soliano
Associate Editor, MY
Diandra Soliano is the Associate Editor of Prestige Online Malaysia. In between morning coffees, long lunches (business, of course), and meeting deadlines over sundown cocktails in the city, you can find her at the yoga studio - or at least she hopes.