The shoreline or beach at Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte is considered the “friendliest” beach for sea turtles, or “pawikans”, to lay and hatch their eggs.
There are some 139 sea turtle eggs in the beach placed in three nests of Barangay Saud makeshift hatchery, said Raymond Sesuca, one of the volunteers of the Pagudpud Pawikan Conservation Group.
Sesuca said there were 13 green sea turtle hatchlings released into the sea on Sunday, Feb. 21, which came from the second nest they had been guarding and monitoring for days since the eggs were relocated from the shoreline.
“It’s now the 18th hatchling from the second nest of 139 eggs. One was released last Friday, four yesterday, and 13 today,” Sesuca said.
Sesuca also said that the Saud marine turtle hatchery’s first nest hatched last Feb. 4 with five successful releases while the two remaining are due anytime this week.
The volunteers also had to relocate the sea turtle eggs found along the Pagudpud shoreline in November and December last year as they were endangered by high tide and predators like crablets and dogs.
During the cold months of December until February, “pawikans” normally return and lay their eggs in the same area where they are hatched.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), in coordination with the barangay and municipalities officials of Pagudpud led by Mayor Rafael Ralph Benemerito II and the conservation group, will formulate measures for the protection and conservation of the sea turtles.