“Tour de Turtles Bermuda: Race On The Rock” will kick off next week and will see green turtles fitted with GPS satellite transmitters to enable researchers to track their every movement as they “race” across the seas.
The public is invited to Clearwater Beach to see the turtle’s release under the Start Gate. This free event will be held on Tuesday, August 14th at 8am. Through the three-month Tour de Turtles, the participating turtles will compete to see which one travels the greatest distance.
In 2008, the nonprofit Sea Turtle Conservancy [STC] launched Tour de Turtles, a free, online education program based on the satellite-tracked migrations of sea turtles from around the world.
This year, STC partnered with the Bermuda Zoological Society, the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum & Zoo, and the Department of Conservation Services to bring Tour de Turtles to Bermuda with a new focus on juvenile and sub-adult green turtles.
Tour de Turtles Bermuda will help raise awareness both in Bermuda and around the world about the country’s iconic green turtles, while also uncovering important information about their daily movements and long-range migrations.
At least five juvenile and sub-adult green turtles will be fitted with GPS satellite transmitters that enable researchers to track their every movement as they travel through Bermuda’s nearshore waters or depart to unknown destinations abroad.
Through the Tour de Turtles Bermuda, the participating turtles will compete with each other to see which one travels the greatest distance over the course of three months. People can log on to the event website to follow along during the race, cheer on their favorite “competitor,” and learn about the “causes” each turtle is representing.
Each cause will pertain to an issue affecting sea turtle survival, and through the “Causes Challenge” race followers can further support their favorite turtle or cause through donations that support sea turtle conservation.
The proceeds of the Causes Challenge will benefit the Bermuda Turtle Project and ensure that sea turtle research and education in Bermuda continues uninterrupted, protecting this endangered animal for generations to come.
Sea turtles are among the oldest creatures on earth and have remained essentially unchanged for 110 million years. With as few as one out of 1,000 hatchlings surviving to adulthood, scientists are still trying to learn more about these mysterious creatures of the sea.
Using satellite technology, scientists can discover more about sea turtle habits at sea and identify foraging and migratory patterns that may hold the key to their survival. This knowledge helps researchers, conservationists and governing agencies make more informed decisions about sea turtle conservation methods and policies.
Visit www.tourdeturtles.org/Bermuda for more information.