On our second day back on Sal, the real work begins. The main things are in place, funding and the all important team of paid Rangers and volunteers and now we are finalising the plan with the Camara Municipal do Sal.
This year we face a couple of new challenges, including the massive increase in activity on the main nesting beach of Algodoeiro/Ponta Preta. Lighting will deter many of our usual visitors from laying their nest and will also mean that any nests that are laid will need to be relocated to a safe place. It's a shame that the developers are not responsive to any suggestions of how to improve the situation and keep turtles coming back to this area.
Our other challenge is to keep turtles safe on Mont Leao which has a history of almost 100% mortality of any that come ashore. We hope to have a semi-permanent camp there that will not only act as protection but also an education and information point.
On the plus side, we will once again be running a workshop in July for people from other islands who are working with, or wish to work with turtles. One of the objectives of the project is to try to stimulate conservation activities amongst communities and to fund activities where there are no resources available.
Another highlight could be returning turtles from 2008. This was the first year of the project and it would be incredibly exciting to see some of the first ones we ever tagged back on the beach again.
We still have a few places open and are especially interested in hearing from German speakers.