Quivira, Massive Sea Turtle Nesting Scenario

Quivira, Massive Sea Turtle Nesting Scenario

Sea turtle season has come to an end with great success. Each year, at Quivira, we have the privilege to do a little bit for the conservation of one of the most beautiful species in our oceans. 

The beaches of Los Cabos are the setting, between the months of July and December, where thousands of turtles gather to build their nests. Due to its environmental conditions (temperature, humidity, sand consistency, etc.), our beaches are an important nesting area, favoring their reproductive cycle.

Three main types of turtles nest here: olive Ridley sea turtle, (Lepidochelys olivacea), the green or black sea turtle, (Chelonia mydas) and the leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea).

We’re about to close a season of magnificent results. We still have one more release to go and, up to now, more than 1,250 olive Ridley sea turtle nests have been sheltered, from which 95 thousand baby turtles were born. We also had two leatherback sea turtle nests and 86 hatchlings were rescued. 

During the season, an unprecedented natural event which caused a massive nesting of olive Ridley sea turtles happened.

September was a month of cyclones and tropical storms which caused hurricane force winds and high waves. Due to these weather conditions, Olive Ridley turtles performed a massive nesting event. In less than 24 hours, nearly 12,500 eggs laid simultaneously on our beaches by more than 120  turtles were collected and sheltered.

This natural event is uncommon and thanks to the effort and enthusiasm in protecting the turtle species that nest each season at Quivira, we can be sure that we contribute to creating a better world.

At Quivira we are more than committed to the environment which is why, through the Letty Coppel Foundation's Sea Turtle Protection Program, we have protected this endangered species for the past 19 years. Each year, we release around 200 thousand turtle hatchlings. 

Trained Quivira staff and a surveillance team daily patrol the beach to look for nests of turtles that come out to lay their eggs. The eggs are collected and taken to the hatchery to protect them; 15 nests are rescued per day and if the weather allows it, up to 100.

We are ready to conclude a successful season that creates big smiles and satisfaction, and with a program that annually involves guests, residents, and the general community to continue preserving our marine species together.

What is the protection process like?

1. Holes 45 cm deep are dug and a white painted stake or small board with data (nest number, spawning date, species of turtle, collection area and probable date of birth) is placed in each nest. 

2. When egg hatching day approaches, a protection against predatory birds is placed in each nest.

3. When the hatchlings leave the nest they are counted and the data is recorded on the nest card. The turtles are released after they have left the nest.

4. The remains are removed: shells, turtles that did not survive, unviable eggs and everything is recorded in the file.

5. The remains of each nest are buried in different parts of the beach so that the natural process of decomposition takes place.

6. Finally, the nesting data is sent at the end of the season to the Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) so that they grant the necessary permission and continue monitoring in future seasons.

We hope to have the same achievements and satisfaction next year!