Turtle Timelines - Come and see the turtles
A turtle making its way to Mon Repos Beach near Bundaberg
Mon Repos Beach is home to the largest concentration of nesting Loggerhead Turtles in the South Pacific and most accessible rookery on our east coast and here’s the turtles’ own calendar of events:
A turtle arrives at Mon Repos beach to lay its eggs.
November – Nesting season starts on the first Saturday when nightly Turtle Tours begin. Bookings are essential by contacting the Information Centre 0741 53 8888 or www.bundabergregion.org/destinations/natural-encounters/turtles
December – Nesting season reaches its peak with tours running except for December 24, 25, 31.
A very rare occasion- a turtle on the beach during the day!
January – Hatching Season starts as the little turtles begin to appear and scurry to the ocean with only one in 1000 surviving to come back to Mon Repos to breed. Even though the first babies are hatching, other mums are still laying their eggs in January.
February – Hatching is in full swing. The tiny hatchlings can be disoriented by bright lights with Bundy running the “Cut the Glow to Help Turtles Go” campaign so they head in the right direction, towards the sea.
Late March – Turtle Time comes to a close.
Scottish visitor Hilary MacRae is up close and personal to a baby turtle
Hatchling time – take care around turtles
Turtle hatchlings begin to appear at Mon Repos Beach from January through to March so take care around these babies to ensure their chance of survival.
As there is no parental care by female turtles, from the time a hatchling pokes its nose out of its sandy nest the odds are against it.
Follow these environmental practices if you’re around hatchlings –
• stay well clear, at least two metres of nests where they are emerging
• keep dogs leashed and away from hatchlings
• limit use of light, never shine lights directly onto them as they may become confused by artificial light and not make it to the ocean.
• use low wattage torches (less than three-volt two cell) with red cellophane or a filter over bulb
• limit use of flash photography
• allow hatchlings to dig themselves out of the nest and run to the sea without disturbance or assistance.
Yes you can see the turtles 7 nights a week during the Turtle Season November to late March. Remember bookings are essential. Tickets are available from Bundaberg Visitor Information Centre. Mon Repos is 15 minutes east of Bundaberg or 10 mins drive from Bargara.