Observe Turtle Nesting at Mayabunder Island
Mayabunder Island: A general overview
If cruising through a blissfully serene natural forest terrain with the mellifluous bird songs chiming in the background is your kind of holiday, then Mayabunder in Andaman and Nicobar island is your go-to destination. This proverbial paradise is enveloped with emerald green tidal creeks and lavishly sanded beaches. Mighty coconut tree plantations and mangroves adorn the spectacular terrain, allowing for a plethora of aquatic activities and jaw-dropping sightseeing spots at Mayabunder.
Located in the Northern part of the Middle Andaman Islands, Mayabunder is sprawled over a land expanse area of 1340 square kilometers. Not too far from the capital city, there are numerous ways to reach Mayabunder island from Port Blair. The distance on this scenic route is approximately 242 kilometres and can be made via road, water as well as by air.
Greatly influenced by the British colonial area, MayabunderIsland is home to the Burmese tribes – descendants of that era. It is made up of miniature eco-friendly villages with a comparatively small population of around 3000 people. Relatively uninhabited, there are only about 800 houses on the island working on natural sources of energy and virtually tech-free. One of the most popular remnants of its British lineage is the German Jetty.
Tickling your offbeat travel bone, sightseeing tours of Mayabunder Island will impress with its offerings – unlike anywhere else in the world.
. Some of the key attractions of Mayabunder island are engulfed in oceanic waves and cyanic open skies with everything in between at your perusal. Some must-visit spots in Mayabunder island include Interview island, Austin X island, Avis island and Ray hills. Here, you will be able to go on elephant rides, wildlife spotting tours, mangrove kayaking and other activities that will introduce you to the bright marine world underwater. Topping all of these, the most prominent sight to see is the turtle nesting ground on Karmatang beach at Mayabunder island.
What is Turtle Nesting?
Entirely weather dependant and best witnessed at night, turtle nesting is a phenomenon wherein female sea turtles crawl their way onto the sandy beaches and dig holes so that they can lay their eggs in them. These holes are termed as nests. On average, these turtles tend to deposit about 100 eggs in each nest and make anywhere between 3 -7 nests per nesting season.
These eggs take around 45 – 90 days to reach maturity and then these little hatchlings make a dent in the eggshell with their caruncle – a temporary tooth only to serve this purpose. Once they succeed in cracking open the outer surface from the inside, which can sometimes take up to 20 minutes, they swiftly come out and hobble their way into the safety of the nearby water. A highly coveted site to see, turtle nesting on Karmatang beach is one of the main reasons people flock over in hordes to observe.
Why Observe This Activity at Mayabunder Island?
One of the main reasons why one should observe this activity atMaybunder island is that it is the only destination in India in which it occurs. Some of the other reasons one must experience this unique phenomenon on the island are;
* There are various packages offered to allow you to witness turtle nesting especially
* There are private and group guided tours that give you a step by step low-down on how to observe this activity.
* You are given all the safety instructions so you can go well prepared.
* It is essentially an overnight activity, so you will be provided with a list of things to carry along.
Popular Places for Observing Turtle Nesting
MayabunderIsland is the only place in India where turtle nesting takes place. This is a highly coveted activity and happens on a few specific beaches mentioned below:
1. Amkunj Beach – This beach is a short distance from Rangat to which you can make your way to from Diglipur in Mayabunder island.
2. Dhaninullah beach – A 5 kilometres long stretch of a beautifully Mangrove dotted beach is also one of the places to witness turtle nesting. This can also be reached to easily from Rangat.
3. Karmatang beach – Also known as the ‘turtle island’, Karmatang beach is the most famous of them all to observe this activity. In addition to this, they also have a whole fleet of water sports that you can engage in.
The overall experience of observing turtle nesting in Karmatang beach is one-of-a-kind.
It promises to take you in awe of mother nature in its glorious entirety. This minimum one-night excursion is bound to be unique and will give you a lot to boast about back home.
Extremely affordable, turtle nesting packages in Mayabunder island start at Rs. 1750 per person and can go higher up as per your requirements. Since it is an overnight activity, the type of accommodation, choice of meals and the transport options you pick will increase or decrease the rate accordingly.
Best Time to Visit
Since this is a seasonal activity and only the lucky few get to witness this great phenomenon, the best time to visit Mayabunder island to observe turtle nesting is between December to March. During this season, the chances of spotting this activity fully-fledged are high.
Taking care of the safety for the turtles is more imperative in this case rather than safeguarding us. These sea turtles are just doing what naturally comes to them, and in no way should humans interfere with it. Some of the points to keep in mind while observing turtle nesting in Mayabunder island includes;
* Silence – You should be silent and wait in patience while the turtles are digging their nests. The slightest noise can spook them and can result in the disruption of the same.
* No touching – You should not try and touch the eggs or the turtles at any point during the activity.
* No littering – It is a strict rule not to litter anywhere near this beach, especially plastic. Turtles tend to eat this mistaking it for jellyfish and often die due to strangulation.